The German Government is planning to close up to 31 military bases located across the country in a move to enhance the effectiveness of the German armed forces in meeting 21st century needs, Defence Minister Thomas de Maiziere confirmed.

The closure follows a decision wherein the defence ministry will have to contribute €9.3bn over the next three years, compared to the current spending of about €30bn a year to reach the goal of saving €80bn by 2013.

According to media reports, most military bases will be closed by 2015, while the rest could close by 2017.

The nation is also considering reducing the size of the military in a further 33 facilities while increasing the number of soldiers for deployment in Afghanistan and Kosovo.

The German military currently has nearly 400 facilities.

The nation recently revealed plans to cut defence orders for Eurofighter jets, Puma tanks and Tiger combat helicopters.