THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 3, 2018
“We are very protective of [the Baltic] region… We have great friends there.” – President Donald J. Trump
BOOSTING DEFENSE AND SECURITY COOPERATION: President Donald J. Trump supports strengthening efforts to enhance the defense and security of our Baltic NATO Allies.
- The United States plans to provide nearly $100 million for procurement of large-caliber ammunition and over $70 million in training and equipping programs to the Baltics to build the capacity of the national military or national-level security forces of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania.
- The United States continues to improve defense and security infrastructure in the Baltic region, strengthen Baltic national resilience efforts, and build defense capacity through security assistance programs such as Foreign Military Financing (FMF) and International Military Education and Training (IMET).
- The Baltic States have together traditionally received about $3.5 million annually in IMET assistance to allow 150 students to attend formal training at military academies in the United States.
- U.S. forces cooperate with Baltic troops in a range of advanced multinational training events, including the U.S.-led SABER STRIKE and BALTOPS exercises.
- More than 5,000 U.S. troops will join multinational forces in this year’s SABER STRIKE exercise, the largest event of its kind to take place in the Baltic region.
ADVANCING ENERGY SECURITY: President Trump reinforces Baltic efforts to diversify energy sources and increase competitiveness in energy markets.
- Recognizing vulnerabilities in Baltic energy infrastructure, the United States will work with key stakeholders in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to improve resilience in the Baltic energy sector. These efforts will include:
- Providing expertise to enhance capacities to prevent, detect, thwart, and recover from hostile cyber-attacks; and
- Offering technical assistance to support energy diversification projects, including synchronizing the Baltic and European electric grids.
ENRICHING PEOPLE-TO-PEOPLE TIES: President Trump advances closer relations between the American, Estonian, Latvian, and Lithuanian populations through exchanges and cultural programs.
- The United States will commit $3 million to work with the three Baltic states to build public and institutional resiliency against disinformation by strengthening independent media outlets, public service broadcasters, and media literacy skills in the region.
- In honor of 100 years of Estonian, Latvian, and Lithuanian independence, the United States will bring more than 100 youth from the Baltic states to the United States on U.S.-sponsored exchange programs.
- U.S. Embassies in Riga, Vilnius, and Tallinn are hosting special centennial programs throughout 2018.
- The U.S. Department of State is partnering with the Baltic-American community to produce an exhibit highlighting the continuity of our relationship and our strong bilateral and regional ties.