NATO should oblige all members to spend 3% of GDP on defense, says Polish President Duda

Poland's President Andrzej Duda gives a statement to the media in Warsaw, Poland, Jan. 10, 2024. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski, File)
By Grzegorz Adamczyk
3 Min Read

President Andrzej Duda has revealed he will propose that NATO allies increase their defense spending to 3 percent of GDP to bolster the alliance’s strength in response to the war in Ukraine.

Duda was speaking ahead of a trip to Washington D.C. on Tuesday alongside Prime Minister Donald Tusk, where they are expected to hold talks with U.S. President Joe Biden at the White House.

Duda views the alliance with the United States as the cornerstone of Polish security, noting that the U.S. invited both him and the Polish prime minister to come to Washington on the 25th anniversary of Poland joining NATO.

Duda will also have meetings with both Democratic Party and Republican Party politicians in the U.S. Congress, as well as the U.S. military. He will be present at a demonstration of the most modern M1 Abrams tank and the AH-64 Apache helicopter, both of which have been ordered by the Polish military. 

On his way back from Washington, Duda will visit NATO’s HQ in Brussels, where he will discuss his proposal for NATO states to spend 3 percent of GDP on defense and the security situation on the eastern flank of the alliance. 

“I want to propose in the near future, and I will be discussing this with all our allies, including with the NATO secretary general at NATO headquarters, that member countries jointly decide to spend not 2 percent, but 3 percent of their GDP on defense,” Duda said during a meeting of Poland’s National Security Council on Monday.

He emphasized the need for a strategic push for enhanced military capabilities within NATO, reflecting a broader response to geopolitical tensions, claiming “a robust NATO is less likely to be challenged.”

“No one will dare to attack a strong NATO, no one will dare to attack strong countries, no one will dare to attack countries that know how to defend themselves efficiently, countries that will be ready to stand up to defend their borders and land,” Duda added.

Reflecting on Poland’s commitment to defense and security, Duda credited the previous conservative (PiS) government for its efforts to strengthen the nation’s deterrence capabilities.

“There must be a clear and bold response to Russian aggression. That response will be to increase the military potential of the North Atlantic alliance,” he said.

The Polish president also stressed the strategic importance of NATO’s latest round of enlargement to include Finland and Sweden, saying it was a testament to the alliance’s growing strength and a message to Russia.

“In the near future, NATO should be able to make the bold decision to admit Ukraine,” Duda added.

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