US pressures European allies very hard to get them to increase defense budgets. However, the pressure is not firstly intended towards Norway, says Prime Minister Erna Solberg.
According to Solberg, there is no doubt that the Americans are keen to get European countries to take a greater share of the burden in NATO. However, even so she believes Norway gets the most praise from the US side.
– We know Norway is not at the top of the list of who need to lift defense spending in NATO, and neither from view of the Americans. I experience almost no question about it, says Solberg.
According to her, American politicians know that Norway contributes a lot.
– It is important to remember that we are the European country with the highest defense spending per capita. It is no wonder, since we are a large country with a small population. To defend ourselves we need to spend much money on it, says Solberg.
US demands about greater defense spending in Europe has characterized the run-up to the NATO summit in Poland this week. The requirement is that the Europeans must do more to reach the goal set in Wales in 2014 that all countries in the alliance in 2024 spend at least 2 percent of their GDP on defense. Today the share in Norway is around 1.5 percent. It is expected to increase over the coming years.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today