Trump has made meeting his commitment to reach the target of 2% of GDP by 2024 a foreign policy priority, occasionally even talking about doubling it.
He has described Germany’s contributions to NATO as a “tremendous delinquency” and criticised Germany for being too dependent on gas supplied by Russia, referring to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project.
Germany is expected to spend 1.42% of its GDP on defence in 2020, while Belgium and Italy spent 0.93% and 1.21% respectively of their GDP in 2019.
In this interview with Fox News, the American President also took credit for the fact that several allies have increased their defence spending, while criticising his predecessor, Democrat Barack Obama, for his inaction in this area.
“The United States was paying for everybody,” Trump asserted. “I said ‘you gotta pay.’ Bottom line, after one meeting we got $130 billion a year more, going to $400 billion.”