NATO Secretary General Calls For Boosting Ammunition Stockpiles, Ramping Up Production
Arriving at a meeting of EU Defence Ministers on Wednesday (8 March 2023), NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg underlined the importance of strengthened ammunition stockpiles and more joint procurement to continue supporting Ukraine.
Stoltenberg noted that NATO Allies have provided Ukraine with support worth nearly €150 billion over the past year, of which €65 billion has been military support. He added that NATO-EU cooperation continues to be vital in supporting Ukraine and protecting shared values.
“We must continue to provide support to Ukraine and NATO Allies have over the last year supported Ukraine with military and financial and economic support worth around close to 150 billion euros out of which 65 billion euros is military support,” Stoltenberg said.
As such, Stoltenberg said it is particularly important to ramp up production of ammunition. “This is an issue that NATO Allies have addressed for some time. And we are now going to agree new guidelines, new requirements for stockpiles of ammunition, ensuring that we both can replenish our own stockpiles, but also to continue to provide support to Ukraine.”
According to Stoltenberg, NATO Allies have signed contracts with the defence industry to ramp up production given the long term demand signals and several NATO Allies have also gone into joint projects or procurement of different types of ammunition but also warehousing for ammunition.
With respect to the fighting in Ukraine, Stoltenberg, said, “over the last weeks and months, we have seen fierce fighting in and around Bakhmut, and what we see is that Russia is storming in more troops, more forces and what Russia lacks in quality, they try to make up in quantity.”
“They have suffered big losses, but at the same time, we cannot rule out that Bakhmut may eventually fall in the coming days,” Stoltenberg said.