A new policy paper finds that in order for Britain to maintain a position as a global power; it must invest more in the tools that ensure it can ‘protect itself and prevent conflict’.
The report by the Henry Jackson Society – ‘Global Britain and the Future of the British Armed Forces’ – discusses the following findings:
- As the geopolitical situation in Europe and Globally becomes more unreliable, the paper recommends the Government increase military budget equivalent to 3% of UK GDP over the next five years.
- By using its land and air forces more actively, the UK could continue to deter threats to the security of its European allies or prevent them from coming together in inappropriate ways.
- The paper recommends that 3% defence spending commitment should be mandated through an Act of Parliament, providing the MoD and the armed forces with greater continuity when undertaking defence planning.
James Rogers, Director of the Global Britain Programme at The Henry Jackson Society and author of the report summarised the conclusions:
“I believe this report outlines – using geopolitical analysis – why the United Kingdom, as it leaves the European Union, must take military power more seriously. It shows why Britain, with a deepening commitment to its European partners, the emergence of a revisionist Russia, and growing interests in the Indo-Pacific zone, needs to spend more on its armed forces.”
Commenting on the report, Mark Francois MP, Member of the Defence Select Committee and a former Minister for the Armed Forces said:
“With the decision to leave the European Union and the emergence of an American president who wants his allies to pull their weight, this report outlines clearly why the time is hardly right for the government to consider further cuts to our armed forces. Britain needs to engage more in Europe and more in the booming Indo-Pacific region. This requires a strong army, a capable air force and a go-anywhere navy.”
Lord West of Spithead, former First Sea Lord, Chief of the Naval Staff and Minister for Security and Counter-Terrorism said:
“Britain’s amphibious capability, a crucial part of which are the assault ships HMS Albion and HMS Bulwark, is critical to the nation’s ability to deter challenges in the European littorals of the Wider North and the Mediterranean, as well as theatre entry worldwide. This report shows why the time has come to increase the resources allocated to defence to maintain them.”
Read the full report here.