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    German Bundeswehr soldiers of the 122th Infantry Battalion take part in a farewell ceremony in Oberviechtach, Germany, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017.

    Berlin to Give Largest Boost to Defence Expenditure Since Cold War - Reports

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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Germany has informed NATO of its plans to spend 47.3 billion euros ($52.8 billion) on defence in 2019, the most significant increase to its national defence expenditure since the end of the Cold War, but will still fall short of the alliance's 2 percent of GDP guideline, n-tv broadcaster reported.

    Germany's defence spending is expected to go up more than 5 billion euros this year compared to 2018, reaching 1.35 percent of the country's GDP, the n-tv broadcaster reported.

    READ MORE: Trump Urges European NATO Members to Boost Budgets Even More, Schools Germany

    Berlin is planning to further boost defense expenses next year to 49.7 billion euros, or 1.38 percent of its GDP, the broadcaster added.

    According to the latest estimates, Germany allocated a total of 1.23 percent of its GDP for defense last year.

    Earlier, German Chancellor Angela Merkel pledged to boost the country's military spending up to 1.5 per cent of its GDP by 2023.

    However, the budget plan presented by German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz in mid-March stipulates that the expenditures will decrease after a rise next year.

    US President Donald Trump has repeatedly rebuked NATO members for freeloading off the United States and not making large enough contributions to defence spending and lashed out at Germany in April, criticizing it for spending just around 1 percent of its GDP on defense.

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