The Ministry presented these priorities, along with the next year’s defence budget bill that received a positive opinion from the Parliamentary Defence Commission.
The defence budget envisages spending equivalent to PLN 118.14 bn. which translates into 3.1% of the expected GDP. If the Armed Forces Support Find is included, the defence expenditure may reach the level of PLN 159 bn., an equivalent of 4.2% of GDP. PLN 4.8 bn. would be allocated to financing the „Equipping the Polish Armed Forces with Main Battle Tanks” long-term programme.
More than PLN 52 billion has been planned to cover the capital expenditure within all parts of the budget (44.3% of the total defence expenditure).
Central material plans expenditure assumes that PLN 48.9 bn. would be spent - more than 12 billion zlotys more than this year (33.4% increase). The capital expenditure level within the framework of the central material plans would go up to PLN 38.644 bn. which, as Vice-Minister of Defence Stanisław Wziątek said, translates into a 29% increase, in comparison with 2023.
PLN 34.9 bn. would be allocated to technical modernization, including PLN 31.4 bn. of capital expenditure (investments, procurement subsidies, expenditure related to co-financing of EU and NATO investment programmes).
Personnel expenditure constitutes 18.6% of the defence budget. Remuneration, emoluments, pay, and derivatives would be covered by PLN 21.88 bn., including 16.4 bn. to cover emoluments, and PLN 5.4 bn. to cover remuneration. The emoluments for soldiers, military intelligence, and military counterintelligence officers, and remuneration for employees would go up by 20%, and a 30% increase is expected for the teaching staff.
The ongoing expenditure is to be higher than PLN 3.46 bn., including PLN 2.5 bn. to cover overhauls of the military and general purpose equipment. 723 million zlotys would be allocated to the procurement of equipment and armament, and 207 million zlotys would be used to pay for services covered by the Central Material Plan.
Retirement and pensions would be covered by an amount of PLN 11.11 bn., and that includes indexation and 13th and 14th retirement pension payouts. More than 157 thousand persons would be entitled to receive military retirement pensions.
Parts of the budget separate from national defence include expenditure on defence research projects (PLN 250 million in the higher education and science section), ESA contribution (PLN 55 million in the economy section), PLN 107 million for Military Prosecution activities, and more than PLN 48 million to cover the military qualification.
The main objective adopted by the Ministry of Defence is to boost the defence potential, for instance, by increasing the number of troops in active service, getting the Territorial Defence Component “fully ready for crisis response and cooperation with the operational forces”, establishing operational readiness for the Cyberspace Defence Forces Component Command, and the subordinated elements, development of capabilities aimed at countering the military surprise, and increasing the Armed Forces’ potential and capabilities in the area of conducting autonomous and allied defence operations, increasing of the capabilities of elements stationed in the eastern and northern part of the country by “forming and establishing complete organizational structures” of the 18th Mechanized Division, 16th Mechanized Division, and 1st Legions Infantry Division.
The primary tasks also include the establishment of proper conditions for the permanent presence of the US forces in Poland, and troop training during domestic and international exercises.
Next year the Polish Ministry of Defence is willing to recruit around 8 thousand soldiers for the Territorial Defence Component, with the number of troops expected to go up to 41 thousand by the end of 2024. Each volunteer is to engage in at least 36 days of training, while the new recruits would be obliged to train 42 or 50 days - this concerns basic, or complementary training.
30,000 volunteers are to engage in voluntary military service, with 20 thousand postings in active reserves. 5 thousand persons of active and passive reserves would undergo training.