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Denmark increases defense spending and gets rid of Russian natural gas – POLITICO

Denmark’s Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said at a press conference Sunday evening Denmark would significantly increase its defense budget and aim for independence from Russian natural gas in response to Moscow’s war on Ukraine. .

Copenhagen will also hold a referendum on June 1 on whether the country should join the EU’s common defense policy.

Under a cross-party agreement in Denmark’s main parliament, Denmark will gradually increase its defense budget until it reaches 2% of GDP by 2033, in line with NATO’s target.

“Historical moments also require historic decisions,” says Frederiksen.

Party leaders also agreed to let Denmark stop using Russian gas. Although the timeframe is unclear, Frederiksen said it should happen “as soon as possible.”

“Energy policy is not just energy policy,” the prime minister said, adding that it was also a matter of “security policy”.

On June 1, Denmark will vote in a referendum on whether it wants its country to join the EU on defense, after 30 years of rejecting national and security policies. block common room. Currently, Denmark does not participate in joint EU military operations.

The Danish parliamentary agreement comes as countries around the bloc are rethinking their defense strategies and deeply reliant on Russian gas. Germany reversed its historic policy of not sending weapons to conflict zones and dramatically increased defense spending to more than 2% of GDP.

This article is part of POLITICOPremium policy services of: Pro Energy and Climate. From climate change, emissions targets, alternative fuels and more, our specialist journalists keep you updated on topics driving the Energy and Gas policy agenda Queen. Email [email protected] for a free trial.

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