VILNIUS – Lithuania's Ministry of National Defense on Monday proposed amendments to several laws to cut deadlines for the development of military infrastructure to host allies.
The ministry says that currently infrastructure cannot be developed swiftly and efficiently due to the excessively lengthy procedures for forming land plots, setting the purpose of use, assessing environmental impact and obtaining building permits.
New projects are now being developed amid Russia's ongoing war in Ukraine, aimed at hosting a German brigade in Lithuania as soon as possible, based on the NATO agreement reached in June.
The majority of the German brigade assigned to Lithuania will be stationed in Germany for the time being due to a lack of infrastructure in Lithuania.
Minister of National Defense Arvydas Anusauskas says the proposed amendments are aimed at lifting or shortening the development procedures to three to four years. For example, the ministry is suggesting allowing military infrastructure to be developed without making adjustments to municipal and local-level general plans, which now takes up to two years.
The existing procedure is a "major obstacle" for the national defense system, Anusauskas said.
"Clearly, we need to change the territorial planning, construction and other laws," the minister told BNS. "These will be minor changes to the laws for objects related to host nation support."
Anusauskas expects the proposed bills to be adopted during the Seimas' fall session in October. Until then, they will have to be approved by the government.