Overall in 2019, the EU spent £35.33bn (€41.4bn) on defence investments including equipment procurement and research and development – an uplift of 19 percent compared to 2018, according to the report published in January 2021.
EDA member states reached the 20 percent benchmark for total defence expenditure on defence investment for the first time since 2010 – hitting 22 percent overall.
Member states were allocated 83.1 percent of defence investments to procure new equipment.
This left 16.9 percent for defence research and development.
EDA Chief Executive, Jiří Šedivý said: “European defence spending reaching a new high is a positive development and clear response to Member States’ threat perception.
“Despite this progression, defence budgets remain vulnerable, with the economic impact of COVID-19 yet to be felt. Increased spending on defence is a positive trend that should be sustained and enhanced going forward with the additional benefit of the EU defence initiatives.
“The regular review in the CARD framework and the fulfilment of the PESCO commitments should contribute positively to better spending and ultimately to the cooperative development of innovative, interoperable and effective capabilities.”