October 11, 2012
Today, in his address to the meeting of NATO defence ministers in Brussels, Minister of Defence Urmas Reinsalu said that the continued reduction of defence expenditures due to the economic crisis poses a threat to NATO’s defence capability.
“If a country has scarce financial resources due to the economic crisis, no security is added from a different measurement of those finances. It does not matter how we measure the contribution of each individual country as long as the contribution continues to decrease in reality”, said the Minister of Defence.
In the opinion of Reinsalu, it is irrelevant how members of the alliance measure their national defence, what is truly important is the implementation of agreed upon plans.
“Estonia consistently contributes two per cent of its GDP to national defence because we believe that the performance of agreed upon obligations will ensure the security of Estonia and NATO as a whole,” he stated.
Minister of Defence Reinsalu said that the readiness of NATO as a whole to cope with any future threats depends on the actual contribution of each ally – the performance of agreed upon obligations cannot be postponed into the distant future.
“Smart defence cannot be a justification for member states to reduce their defence budget and contribution to NATO. We must focus on cooperation that enables us to not reduce resources, but to make better use of them – whether an economic crisis exists or not,” said the Minister of Defence.