While President Trump’s weekend Twitter assertion that “Germany owes vast sums of money to NATO” is disputed by experts – and by Berlin – it draws attention to the fact that Germany, like the majority of the 28 members of the alliance, has yet to meet a NATO-agreed commitment to devote two percent of GDP to defense spending.
At the same time, a closer look at NATO funding also underlines that – as is the case with the United Nations – the U.S. contributes more than one-fifth of the direct, collective funding that keeps NATO’s military and civilian operations on track.
Member countries contribute in line with an agreed cost-sharing formula, based on Gross National Income. (GNI equals GDP plus income obtained in dividends, interest etc. from other countries.)
Under that formula, the U.S. contributes 22.144 percent of the NATO budget, followed by Germany (14.65 percent), France (10.63 percent) and Britain (9.84 percent).