VILNIUS, March 27 (Itar-Tass) —— Lithuania needs to enlarge allocations for defense programs, Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius said on Tuesday.
“This year’s budget has been drafted, and allocations for the army needs are as big as we can afford,” he said. “All the budgetary allocations were cut amid the crisis, and the defense budget fell short international standards as a result. Hopefully, we will allocate more for defense in 2013,” the premier said.
Lithuanian Defense Minister Rasa Jukneviciene said at the Monday press conference, which marked the eighth anniversary of the Lithuanian admission to NATO, that the national army would have to be reduced because of the cut funding. NATO member states traditionally spend 2% of their GDP on defense. Vilnius allocates approximately 1% of GDP on the army now.