"Military investments are bad investments"

Seen from a purely economic angle, military investments are bad investments. That's according to Fleming Paul De Grauwe, an economist working at the London School of Economics. De Grauwe was speaking in the VRT's financial programme "De Vrije Markt", saying this type of investment means no added value to a country's production capacity.

"If you invest in machines, trucks and infrastructure, this will allow you to produce more in the future. But this is not the case with military spending", De Grauwe argues.

In the U.S. some 146,000 people are employed to develop the F-35, the possible successor of the F-16 fighter jets. "I don't deny that this is creating jobs at the moment, but this is the case for everything. Here, I am specifically talking about the notion of investing, in the sense of producing something which will allow you to produce more and better in the future", explains De Grauwe.

"If the government is really into new technologies or scientific research, it's better to put the cash into this type of projects. I am convinced this will have a bigger effect than raising defence spending."