Greece demands from EU exclusion of military spending from public debt calculation
Countries like Greece should not be punished for such strategic choice, says prime minister
Greece demanded from the EU an exclusion of military spending from public debt calculation, local media said Friday.
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis argued during a EU leaders’ informal summit in Paris that the share of military spending in the Greek state budget has been higher than other European countries and nations like Greece should not be punished for such strategic choices, according to the Kathimerini newspaper.
Greece allocated 2.8% percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) to military spending in 2020, according to IMF data, which is among the highest in the EU and the world.
Meanwhile, the country’s external debt as a percentage of GDP is more than 300%.
An EU fiscal rule, also known as the Stability and Growth Pact (SGP), sets two hard limits on EU member states: a state's budget deficit cannot exceed 3% of GDP and national debt cannot surpass 60% of GDP.
Athens recently signed multiple big-ticket arms deals with Israel for the purchase of unmanned aerial vehicles and missiles, with France for the purchase of Rafael warplanes and FDI-type frigates and with the US for an update of its F-16 fighter jets to the latest Viper configuration.