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Nato

Part of European Union (Withdrawal) Bill – in the House of Commons at 4:57 pm on 20th June 2018.

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Photo of Julian Lewis Julian Lewis Chair, Defence Committee 4:57 pm, 20th June 2018

Yes. The hon. Gentleman, who is a valued member of the Defence Committee, has argued that point consistently on the Committee. The Government certainly need to bear that in mind when placing orders for expensive new equipment, at least during a period of uncertainty when there is doubt that the pound will hold its value against another currency.

In conclusion, we have an opportunity in this NATO summit to show that we are leading by example. It was never the case that we were anywhere near the NATO minimum of defence expenditure. It was always the case that we were second only to the Americans. We must try to restore that situation, and that means raising more money for defence and spending more money on defence. Spending 2.5% of GDP will restore us to where we were a few years ago; 3% of GDP should be our target, because only that way can we be ready for the threats that sadly face us today and show no sign whatever of diminishing.