Ministry of Defence: Finance

Ministry of Defence written question – answered am ar 25 Mawrth 2024.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Tan Dhesi Tan Dhesi Shadow Minister (Exports)

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if he will make an assessment of the potential impact of the funding allocated to his Department in the Spring Budget 2024 on (a) national security and (b) the UK's commitments to its international allies.

Photo of James Heappey James Heappey Minister of State (Ministry of Defence) (Minister for the Armed Forces)

UK defence spending is at its highest level in history and is increasing in real terms. We were one of the first countries to support Ukraine following Russia’s illegal invasion The Integrated Review Refresh recognised the implications of the invasion on our own security and wellbeing, providing extra investment and strengthening our alliances via partnerships (AUKUS and GCAP).

In a volatile, complex and ambiguous security environment we are a proud leading contributor to NATO, contributing to every NATO mission and operation. The UK was the first large European country to commit to 2% of GDP for defence and we have consistently met or exceeded the NATO target.

We also remain committed to increasing our overall spending to 2.5% of GDP as soon as fiscal and economic conditions allow. The Prime Minister has been clear that the target and path towards 2.5% will be set out at the next Spending Review.

The hon. Member will be concerned to note that his own party has thus far declined to match the Governments commitments on defence spending, saying only that a Labour Government would meet the 2% NATO minimum. Such a policy would mean an immediate £7 billion cut to the defence budget, with profound consequences for both our national security and our relationship with international allies.

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