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The Handbook of European Defence Policies and Armed Forces$
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Hugo Meijer and Marco Wyss

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198790501

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198790501.001.0001

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Spain and Portugal

Spain and Portugal

Chapter:
(p.140) 7 Spain and Portugal
Source:
The Handbook of European Defence Policies and Armed Forces
Author(s):

Félix Arteaga

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198790501.003.0008

This chapter examines divergences and commonalities between Spain’s and Portugal’s defence policies. Both countries share the Iberian Peninsula but they do not constitute a single strategic entity. Their national defence policies show different patterns according to their own history and strategic culture, with no military joint venture so far. Both countries maintain strong defence relationships with the United States and are strengthening their bilateral cooperation at the political and military levels to cope with the new threats and risks emerging on the southern flank of NATO and the EU. Militarily, they are not comparable, because Spain has more expeditionary, industrial, and budgetary capabilities than Portugal. Both countries have developed national security strategies since 2001 to adjust their military capabilities and force structures to the new strategic environment despite their unfavourable economic situation.

Keywords:   NATO, EU, defence, strategic culture, expeditionary warfare, capabilities, Spanish armed forces

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