The White Paper on Defence 2011 introduced to journalists

Autor: Oldrich Holecek

The Czech government passed the White Paper on Defence on its session on 18th May 2011.

The White Paper on Defence results from the governmental Programme Statement. It evaluates the real condition of the Czech military and proposes measures to improve functions of the whole defence department in the future.

The contents of the Paper show that due to non-conceptual cuts and poor economic decisions the Armed Forces of the Czech Republic suffer from a long-term instability. Compared to assumptions from 2002, the Ministry of Defence budget has been shortened to less than a half of planned amounts. The three major findings of the Paper are as follow:

  1. The present ambition of reaching 26.200 personnel will not be met due to demographic situation and decreasing competitive advantage of the military in the job market.
  2. The defence department has a deficit burden of 80 – 90 billion Czech Crowns, accumulated in the past.
  3. The operating lifetime of a number of equipment ends in upcoming years and the defence department will not be able to finance all previously planned modernisations.

Due to the state of the public funds, it is unreal to expect any marked increase in budget for the defence ministry. The White Paper on Defence therefore proposes a number of measures to be realised just for the purpose the military is kept viable also in the future.

The measures relate to all areas of activities, including limitation of some military capabilities. Besides starting to bring recommendations of the Paper in action, one of the first major priorities of the Defence Ministry is to introduce measures, which will ensure social and financial stability of military personnel.

The 168-page document has been developed from last September by a 15-member team of military and civilian experts headed by the First Deputy Defence Minister Jiri Sedivy.

The full text in English of the White Paper on Defence will be published at this web site as soon as it is translated.

Updated: May 20, 2011