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Olaf Solz calls on EU countries to go ahead with mass weapons production after Trump's threats

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Monday that German arms makers can count on his government to increase military spending and meet the NATO target of 2 percent of GDP. At the same time, the official appealed to EU states to move towards mass production of military equipment through joint and long-term orders, as reported by Reuters and AFP.

Olaf Scholz made the announcements after former US President Donald Trump angered all US allies by saying the United States may fail to protect NATO allies that lack sufficient funds to defend themselves against a possible Russian attack. invasion.

During his tenure, Trump has publicly criticized nations that do not meet the NATO target of spending 2 percent of GDP on defense. Chancellor Scholz said on Monday that the defense industry in the EU and Germany must switch to mass production of weapons as the war in Ukraine revealed that European manufacturers have had great difficulty meeting demand for munitions.


"We have to move from the manufacturing industry to the large-scale production of defense equipment," said Scholz, inaugurating the construction site of the future Rheinmetall company's weapons factory in Unterlüss, home to Germany's most important military industrial complex. .

"Not only the United States, but all European countries must do even more to support Ukraine. The commitments so far are not enough. Germany's strength alone is not enough," said Scholz:


Germany will meet the NATO target of 2% of GDP

According to the chancellor, the German military and defense industry can now count on Berlin's commitment to meet the NATO target of 2% of GDP. "This is an urgent need. Because, as harsh as it is, this is the reality: we don't live in times of peace," said Soltz.

He stressed that this is a "signal" to the Europeans to substantially increase their defense industry base. According to the chancellor, the war in Ukraine and the "imperial ambitions" of Russian President Vladimir Putin represent a "major threat" and "those who want peace must succeed in deterring potential aggressors".


Despite the billions of euros worth of arms sent to Ukraine by EU states since the start of the Russian invasion, they are still far from reaching a sufficient capacity to sustainably support Kiev and replenish its own stockpiles. “A strong defense requires a solid industrial base. It will see the light of day if we, the Europeans, unite with our decisions and thus give the industry prospects for the next 10, 20 or 30 years," he stressed.

Scholz admitted that, in this respect, Germany had long been a bad example, as armaments policy was "conducted like buying a car", without the long-term planning that industries need for defense to invest in additional capabilities.

“If I want to buy a (car) VW Golf in two or three years, then I know today: it will exist. I might have to wait three or six months for that, but then the car will be in the yard,” he said. But arms production doesn't work like that. Tanks, howitzers, helicopters and anti-aircraft systems are not on a shelf somewhere,” explained Scholz. Rheinmetall's new facility is to produce 155 mm artillery ammunition starting in 2025, gradually increasing to a capacity of 200,000 rounds per year. The company said it plans to invest 300 million euros and create around 500 jobs. Rheinmetall aims to produce, at its plants in Europe, up to 700,000 artillery shells in 2025, compared with 400-500,000 this year and 70,000 before the war in Ukraine.

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