Europe News

France will meet NATO defense spending goal by 2024

French President Emmanuel Macron arrives for the second day of a NATO summit in Brussels, Belgium, July 12, 2018. Tatyana Zenkovich/Pool via REUTERS

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - French President Emmanuel Macron said on Thursday France would meet its NATO-agreed goal of spending 2 percent of GDP on defense by 2024, saying cohesion within the North Atlantic Treaty Organization was only possible if the burden was shared “fairly”.

U.S. President Donald Trump has upbraided NATO member states for not reaching the target sooner. Aside from the United States, which spends about 3.5 percent of GDP on defense, only Britain, Poland, Greece and Estonia currently meet the target.

Speaking at a news conference at the NATO summit, Macron said Trump had reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to the defense organization, despite earlier expressing doubts.

France spends around 1.8 percent of GDP on defense.

Reporting by Michel Rose and Richard Lough; Writing by Luke Baker