Canada has canceled about $782 million worth of military spending and will eliminate nearly 1,000 jobs at its national defense headquarters in Ottawa.
Marcel Masse, newly appointed minister of national defense, said the cuts would be made because of the easing in East-West tensions and because of Canada's recession."The dismantling of the Berlin Wall and the gradual withdrawal of Soviet forces from central Europe have signaled the end of the Cold War," Masse said in a statement.
"And as is the case for all countries, we have had to take into account the combination of these changes and rigorous financial constraints imposed on all government departments."
A $365 million project to buy 820 tracked all-terrain vehicles for use in Canada's Arctic has been canceled.
The defense department said it will save $37 million by not replacing rifles and carbines for the armed forces and by canceling the conversion of armored personnel carriers to carry anti-tank weapons.
The armed forces will also reduce its purchases of ammunition over the next five years by $347 million.
Prime Minister Brian Mulroney's Conservative government is struggling to trim the country's large deficit at a time when the economy is being battered by a recession that started in April 1990.
Masse said Canada will spend $3.6 billion for military purchases in the 1991-92 fiscal year, which began April 1.
A confidential proposal leaked last month from the Defense Department said it was considering closing several military bases and reducing its personnel by up to 25 percent.