Romania has received the first batch of Patriot surface-to-air missiles from the US.

According to a Reuters report, the induction of the missile system will help Romania enhance its air defences as it seeks to upgrade its weaponry to Nato standards.

Romania has already decided to increase defence spending to 2% of its gross domestic product (GDP), as suggested by the US to all Nato members to combat external threats.

At the receipt ceremony of Patriot missiles, Romanian Prime Minister Ludovic Orban said: “Romania decided to carry out an army endowment programme for ten years, which was adopted and basically stipulates that we need to strengthen our capabilities, especially in the defence area.

“Romania decided to meet its commitment and earmark 2% of its GDP to defence, to achieve this endowment programme. As part of the endowment programme, the Patriot missile system is extremely important. It’s a surface-to-air missile system of unprecedented complexity and technological level and with exceptional results proved in combat actions.

“Romania is safer with this Patriot missile system on its territory and the Romanian citizens better defended.”

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Patriot is a long-range air defence system designed to intercept ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and advanced aircraft.

It is produced by Raytheon and Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.

In March, Raytheon received a $551m contract to supply the Patriot air and missile defence system to Bahrain.