Lithuania to spend 2.02 pct of GDP on defense in 2020

The Lithuanian government proposed to the country’s parliament on Tuesday to allocate 2.02 percent of the country’s GDP on defense for the next year amid efforts to strengthen security.

According to Defense Minister Raimundas Karoblis, the country’s State Defense Council, the top governing body on national defense, approved the defense spending level “few weeks ago.”

“That is a decision by the State Defense Council, that is 2.02 percent of GDP from the budget,” Karoblis told lawmakers at the country’s parliament on Tuesday amid preparations to approve the next year’s state budget.

Next year, Lithuania’s defense spending would exceed 1 billion euros for the first time, reaching 1.027 billion euros, reported local media. For 2019, Lithuania allocated 948 million euros for defense.

Last year, the country’s parliamentary parties signed an agreement pledging to increase the country’s defense spending up to 2.5 percent of GDP by 2030.

Karoblis also told lawmakers that NATO and separate allied countries would increase their investments in Lithuania in coming years.

“Mainly into infrastructure, also communications and reconnaissance equipment,” said Karoblis.