The Czech military is looking for ways to deal with the high number of commissioned officers compared to a low number of noncommissioned officers and common soldiers, the Pravo daily writes.
The Czech military has around 1,250 more commissioned officers than needed, the optimal number being around 5,000. Out of the 6,250 commissioned officers in the military, 31 of them are generals and 2,100 are of other higher officer ranks (like majors, colonels), Pravo writes.
General Staff spokeswoman Vlastimila Cyprisova told Pravo that a change is expected to take place in the rank structure of the military mainly due to the retirement of older officers and a massive recruitment campaign.
Cyprisova added that some newly created units will also have a lower number of officer ranks. The goal, as stated in the Concept of the Build-up of the Armed Forces of the Czech Republic 2025 government material, is to reach a ratio of common soldiers to officers that is similar to other NATO countries' armed forces.
"As of July 1, 2019, the armed forces counted 25,000 professional soldiers, 25 percent of which are officers," Cyprisova noted.
The Build-up Concept plans to increase the number of military personnel to 30,000 thousand by 2025. Recruitment centres are thus bringing around 2,000 recruits into the armed forces every year.
Meanwhile, training and instruction centres are restructuring to operate with personnel of lower ranks in order to save on recruit training costs. "It is time to get rid of the expensive officers [in basic training] and make use of experienced soldiers and fighters that can instruct the recruits in what they can," former chief warrant officer Petr Seifert told Pravo.