VIENNA – Defence minister under pressure over planned military budget cuts

While Austria’s budget for 2020 will increase military spending by €123 million, the budget will be cut by €760,000 in 2021 and further until 2023, according to numbers obtained by the Austrian Press Agency.

The reports triggered harsh criticism against current conservative Defence Minister Klaudia Tanner (ÖVP), as Social Democrats (SPÖ) called her the “gravedigger of the army”, and liberals said she was unfit for office.

The proposal to cut the military budget comes as a surprise as defence ministers had previously requested to up the budget, particularly as former defence minister Thomas Starlinger conducted a stocktaking exercise in 2019, revealing that a whopping €16.2 billion would be needed until 2030 to render the army fully functional. 

(Philipp Grüll |


Subscribe to our newsletters