Russia will maintain its annual defence spending at 2.8% of GDP until 2020 to coincide with ongoing military reforms, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said.

“This will help provide troops with advanced weaponry in line with the current state arms procurement programme,” he added.

A total of $670bn will be spent under the programme, which includes $16.3bn in 2010, $19.2bn in 2011, $24.3bn in 2012 and $38.8bn in 2013, according to RIA Novosti.

A considerable part of the budget will also be spent to increase service pay and improve social conditions for Russian servicemen, including all categories of military personnel as well as contracted soldiers.

“From 2010, we will start the planned reform of the system of military service pay. Finally, we should reach the goal of raising service pay practically threefold,” Medvedev added.