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23 septembre 2011 5 23 /09 /septembre /2011 07:50

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22 Sep 2011 By GERARD O'DWYER DefenseNews

 

HELSINKI - Finland's Armed Force's Command (AFC) has proposed making significant cuts in peacetime strength and wartime mobilization levels, with defense chief Gen. Ari Puheloinen warning that low defense spending has forced the AFC to abandon plans to establish a Home Guard.

 

Proposals include reducing the length of military service as a cost-saving measure, rotating reservists out of forces earmarked for frontline service at a younger age, and reducing military exercises, training and refresher courses for reservists.

 

"These cutbacks will be necessary if we are to adapt to the level of funding in the future, and protect our defense capability," Puheloinen said.

 

The proposals are intended to accommodate a likely $130 million cut in its budget for 2012. Spending on defense in 2011 will run to $4.2 billion.

 

The AFC's cost-savings proposal includes the closure of some military bases by 2013. This will be done as part of the ongoing National Defense Reform Program, which will also see the introduction of a more centralized leadership structure and the discontinuation of the existing four Provincial Command military districts.

 

These measures will also force the AFC to reduce the number of professional soldiers across all ranks and will also lead to the layoff of administrative civilian personnel in the military.

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