A new report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), for arms deals in the Middle East, was released between 21014-2018 and the results were as follows.
International arms transfers increased by 7.8 percent.
The United States is the world’s largest arms exporter.
The United States expands the arms export gap with Russia, which ranks second.
Saudi Arabia is the largest arms importer in the world.
Five Arab countries are among the most importing countries in the world.
Top 10 weapons exporting countries
- The United States 36 percent
- Russia 21 percent
- France 6.8%
- Germany 6.4 percent
- China 5.2 percent
- The United Kingdom 4.2 percent
- Spain: 3.2 percent
- Israel 3.1%
- Italy: 2.3 percent
- Netherlands: 2.1 percent
American weapons outperform
US arms exports increased 29 percent in 2009-2013 and 2014-2018. The US share of total global arms exports rose from 30 percent to 36 percent.
The gap between the United States and Russia has increased in arms exports, with US exports of major arms 75 percent higher than Russia’s 2014-2018 exports, while the ratio between the two countries was only 12 percent in 2009-2013.
About 52 percent of US weapons went to the Middle East in 2014-2018.
According to the director of the Stockholm Institute for Peace Studies, Florent said the United States has exported weapons to at least 98 countries in the last five years, including sophisticated weapons such as fighter jets, short- and medium-range ballistic missiles and a large number of guided bombs.
Russia’s arms exports fell by 17 per cent in the period 2009-2013 and 2014-2018, owing to the decline in Russian and Indian arms imports from Russia.
For France, its arms exports in the period 2009-2013 and the period 2014-2018 increased by 43 percent, while Germany’s exports increased by 13 percent in the same period.
Joint EU arms exports accounted for about 27 percent of global arms exports in 2014-2018.
States importing weapons
Five Arab countries are among the top 10 arms importers worldwide between 2014 and 2018.
- Saudi Arabia 12 percent
- India is 9.5 percent
- Egypt 5.1%
- Australia: 4.6 percent
- Algeria: 4.4 percent
- China 4.2 percent
- UAE 3.7%
- Iraq is 3.7 percent
- South Korea 3.1 percent
- Vietnam is 2.9 percent
Arms flows to the Middle East increased in the period 2009-2013 and 2014-2018, while other regions of the world experienced a decline in armaments.
Middle East arms imports increased 87 percent in 2009-2013 and 2014-2018, accounting for 35 percent of global arms imports in 2014-2018.
Saudi Arabia became the world’s largest arms importer in 2014-2018, rising 192 percent from 2009 to 2013.
Egypt’s imports of arms (the third largest importer of arms in 2014-2018) increased threefold, or 206 percent, over the period 2009-2013 and 2014-2018.
Israel’s imports of arms rose 354 percent, Qatar 225 percent and Iraq 139 percent in 2009-2013 and 2014-2018. While Syria’s imports of arms declined by 87 percent in the same period.
“There is a huge demand for arms from the United States, the United Kingdom and France, in the Gulf region where tensions and conflicts are spreading,” says Peter Wiseman, principal investigator and director of the Stockholm Institute for Peace Studies.
Russia, France and Germany have increased exports to Egypt in the last five years, he added.