The top U.S. official in Ottawa says in his country’s view, Canada is not likely to hit the defence spending targets it has promised.
Richard Mills, the U.S. Embassy’s chargé d’affaires, said while there have been positive spending steps by the Canadian government, the view south of the border is that Canada will fall short in hitting its promised investment of two per cent of GDP on defence.
“We were very pleased with some of the defence spending that’s occurred under this government, including some effort to buy new frigates, some new airplanes,” he said in an interview with The West Block’s Mercedes Stephenson.
“But to be quite honest with you, Mercedes, the Canadian government is not on course to meet two per cent by 2024. In fact, they probably will reach a peak — in our estimate, around 1.4 per cent — in 2024 and then decline rapidly.”
Canada, along with other NATO members, agreed in 2014 to increase spending on defence to the tune of two per cent of GDP by 2024.
But according to NATO estimates from November, just nine of out of 29 member nations have met the goal.
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