In total, NATO members, including the US, spent around $ 1.03 trillion on defense in 2020, according to the report, released the day before a meeting of NATO defense ministers, including US Secretary of Defense Mark Esper , where spending is on the agenda, Stoltenberg said.
When the allies agreed in 2014 that all members should reach NATO’s 2% spending level by 2024, only the US, Greece and the UK complied. Now NATO data shows Romania, Estonia, Latvia, Poland, Lithuania, France and Norway are reaching the destination.
Trump has recognized a general surge in Allied defense spending in recent years, and Stoltenberg has praised the U.S. President for making this a priority. However, the increases date back to 2014, when Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine caused Allies to reverse a downward trend in spending that began with the end of the Cold War.
For many allies, particularly on NATO’s eastern flank, Moscow’s aggressive actions were a motivating factor in increasing spending.
Gross domestic product (GDP) is the standard measure of the value added created through the production of goods and services in a country during a certain period. As such, it also measures the income earned from that production, or the total amount spent on final goods and services (less imports).