The Pentagon’s 2024 budget request places focus on munitions production as shipping tens of billions of dollars worth of military equipment to Ukraine has depleted US ammunition stockpiles.
According to The Hill, the budget request includes $30.6 billion that would go to arms makers to produce missiles and other types of munitions, representing a 12% increase from 2023 levels.
The budget will also continue what has been dubbed “wartime purchasing powers” for the Pentagon that allows more multi-year contracts for weapons and waives other restrictions. The purchasing powers were first authorized by the 2023 National Defense Authorization Act.
The Pentagon is planning a drastic increase in munitions manufacturing and hopes to increase artillery ammunition production by 500% over the next two years, an example of how supporting Ukraine in its war is a boon to US defense contractors.
The US has provided Ukraine with an enormous number of artillery rounds, including over one million 155mm shells. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has acknowledged that the entire alliance cannot produce shells as fast as Ukraine is using them.
President Biden requested $886.4 billion for his 2024 military budget, including $842 billion for the Pentagon. Congress will likely raise the number as it has the previous two years.