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    Peshmerga fighters from Iraq take part in a training session of the German army Bundeswehr in Munster near Hannover, Germany, Tuesday, March 1, 2016

    German Parliamentary Committee Agrees to Boost Defence Spending in 2019

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    Some lawmakers expressed opposition to the 2019 fiscal budget, suggesting other sectors and areas, such as renewable energy, should be prioritized over defense.

    Germany’s parliamentary budget committee has agreed to allocate billions of euros in additional funding to the Bundeswehr, after 15 hours of intense negotiations.

    The new budget, which was only agreed after several revisions and amendments were made, was agreed on Friday morning, and will see the Ministry of Defence be allocated €43.2 billion to procure a fleet of new transport helicopters and ships.

    READ MORE: Germany Considers Massive Military Spending Increase Amid Hardware Crisis

    Although politicians were relieved that the budget was finally agreed, not everyone was satisfied.

    Sven-Christian Kindler, a spokesperson for the Greens, said it was “more of the same” from the ruling coalition and described the budget as “disastrous”, urging the government to spend more on renewable energy and other sustainable initiatives.

    "The coalition doesn't have the will or the power for fundamental change," he said.

    Although the government has continued with its “schwarze Null” policy – maintaining a balanced budget with no additional borrowing – it did have to reach into its reserves to cover the higher levels of planned spending.

    The government had been under mounting pressure to boost military spending to address the woeful state of Germany’s armed forces, with just a third of its new hardware operational and over 20,000 officer vacancies unfilled.

    Plagued by a lack of manpower, and with recruitment campaigns failing, some politicians have suggested adopting a conscription system to quickly address the issue, though there is significant opposition to the proposal.

    READ MORE: German MP: Reinstating Military Service Part of Merkel Party's Campaign Tactics

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    spending, budget, military, German government, Bundeswehr, Germany, Berlin
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