Europe Military

German Military Boost Fails to Spend Single Euro

A senior German MP has condemned the slow start of a drive to boost the country’s military announced after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last year.

Eva Högl, parliamentary commissioner for the armed forces, said “not a single euro” of a €100bn fund (£88bn; $107bn) approved by MPs had been spent.

The military has even less than it had before Russia’s attack, she added.

The invasion of Ukraine led Germany to announce a massive increase in military spending, a major policy shift.

Chancellor Olaf Scholz received a standing ovation in parliament on 27 February last year, as he announced the radical departure from Germany’s pacifist tradition.

The new policy included a commitment to Nato’s spending target of 2% of GDP for defence, as well as the €100bn special fund.

More than a year later, Ms Högl, a Social Democrat like the chancellor, said: “Unfortunately I have to note that in 2022, not a single euro or cent of this special fund has been spent.”

Presenting her annual report to fellow MPs, she said the armed forces had “too little of everything – even less since 24 February 2022”, referring to the day of Russia’s invasion.

She added that barracks were “pitiful”, with some lacking “functioning toilets, clean showers… indoor sports facilities, troop kitchens, care facilities, ammunition depots and armouries”.

Despite the lack of spending on its own forces, Germany has sent large amounts of military aid to Ukraine over the past year – from air defence systems to missiles. In January it promised to send state-of-the-art Leopard 2 tanks.

Source: BCC