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Latvia has to spend more than 2% on national defense - Latkovskis
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    Latvia has to spend more than 2% on national defense - Latkovskis

    RIGA, July 12 (LETA) - Latvia has to spend more than 2 percent of its gross domestic product on national defense, Saeima Defense, Internal Affairs and Corruption Prevention Committee's Chairman Ainars Latkovskis (Unity) told LETA.

    There are several NATO countries, including Latvia, that spend 2 percent of their GDP on defense, Latkovskis pointed out. He believes that U.S. President Donald Trump's suggestion that NATO members should increase defense spending to 4 percent of GDP is based on the fact that the United States' defense spending is much larger than what other NATO members allocate for defense.

    "I don't want to speculate on how much each member should spend on national defense. After all, each country has a different GDP, and 2 percent of GDP for the wealthy countries is a huge amount," emphasized Latkovskis.

    As for Latvia, the country has to increase its defense spending to over 2 percent of GDP, believes Latkovskis. Improving Latvia's defense capabilities and hosting allied forces require additional investments.

    "If what we need to invest exceeds 2 percent, we have to accept that. I don't think we should be spending 4 percent of GDP on defense, but I disagree with those few politicians who believe that Latvia has to stop at 2 percent. We have to have a well-armed, professional army and Home Guard," added Latkovskis.

    As reported, Trump said at the NATO Summit in Brussels on Wednesday that the allies should boost defense spending to 4 percent of their countries' GDP.

    • Published: 12.07.2018 15:33
    • LETA
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