Auteur Topic: Defensiebegrotingen en -problematiek, niet NL  (gelezen 163051 keer)

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Defensiebegrotingen en -problematiek, niet NL
« Reactie #2961 Gepost op: 10/07/2006 | 21:54 uur »
Personnel Consumes Most of German Budget Hike
By SEBASTIAN SCHULTE, BONN
DEfense News, 07-10-2006

Germany’s coalition government has passed a 2007 federal budget that calls for a 16 percent increase in defense spending, but most of that hike is earmarked for personnel issues.
The plan, approved July 5 by the Christian-Social Democratic Cabinet of Chancellor Angela Merkel, sets defense spending at 28.4 billion euros ($36.4 billion), up from the 23.9 billion euros being spent this year. However, most of that increase — about 4 billion euros — is from pension and retirement funding for soldiers and civil personnel that, for the first time, is being folded into the defense budget instead of standing alone in the federal spending plan.
Defense is second only to the Employment and Social Ministry in an overall federal budget of 276.6 billion euros, with the ministry taking the lion’s share at 122 billion euros.
Pension funding aside, the Defense Ministry will see an extra 480 million euros next year, yet most of that is to cover rising procurement costs of some 300 million euros annually, thanks to an increase in the common value-added tax on goods to 19 percent. The 180 million euros left represents the true budget growth, which can be spent on operations by the Ministry of Defense.
‘Not Enough’
This increase for defense spending “is not enough,” said Elke Hoff, representing the liberals on parliament’s defense committee. “The passed budget does not reflect the operational reality encountered by German troops during their missions in Afghanistan, for example.”
Hoff said that instead of acquiring available mission-relevant items — like improvised explosive device jammers or more armored vehicles like the Dingo 2 — the budget is charged for several years with the expensive Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft and Tiger UH attack helicopters, the maintenance for which is not yet reflected in the budget calculation.
“I don’t doubt the need for those procurements, but I do doubt that the numbers we’re acquiring are really needed,” Hoff said. “The Bundeswehr is not more expensive than other armed forces; it just doesn’t get the money it needs to do the job.”
A defense expert in Berlin pointed to more demands on the already strained defense budget, such as Germany’s commitment in Congo. And Germany is expected to commit itself more to out-of-area missions.
“Word is that Defense Minister Franz-Josef Jung is already talking in Berlin about a German commitment in Sudan,” the expert said.
“We’re paying too much for military aviation, which we don’t need in the ordered quantity. By 2010, the Bundeswehr will have serious problems regarding its budget and fulfilling the missions asked of it if this is not countered now,” he said, noting that the armed forces are chronically underfinanced. “The past budgets shared similar problems and the budget passed for 2007 does not show a way out.”
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