PANAGYURISHTE, Bulgaria (BulgarianMilitary.com) – Global military spending last year reached its highest level in three decades, with the largest share in the US and China, according to the annual report of the Swedish research institute SIPRI, learned BulgarianMilitary.com, quoting Novinite.
The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute reported that the world’s military spending in 2018 totals $1.8 trillion, 2.7 percent more than 2017, or $239 per person.
The United States remains the country with the largest military spending in the world with $649 billion, up from 4% over the previous year. Their share amounts to 36 percent of global spending in 2018. The United States has spent nearly as much as the next eight countries in the ranking combined for military purposes.
The second is China with 250 billion dollars, or 14 percent of the world’s costs. This is an increase of 5 percent compared to 2017 – the lowest annual increase since 1995 reflecting weaker economic growth.
Saudi Arabia remains third with $67.6 billion despite cost cuts by more than 6 percent compared to 2017.
India and France are followed. The top five countries account for 60 percent of global military spending.
Russia has gone down to sixth, with military spending of 61.4 billion dollars. It is not in the top five for the first time since 2006. However, its cost is still a quarter higher than in 2009, says SIPRI.
The rest of the ten countries with the largest military spending are Britain, Germany, Japan and South Korea.
A general trend according to SIPRI is that military spending as a share of GDP has declined in all regions since 1999.
Six of the 10 countries where military spending accounts for the largest share of GDP are in the Middle East. Among them are Saudi Arabia with 8.8 percent, Oman with 8.2 percent and Israel with 4.3 percent. SIPRI does not have data for several countries, including Syria, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Yemen, but based on available data, the Middle East indicator is estimated at 4.4 percent of GDP.
In Europe, it averages 1.6 percent of GDP, slightly less than Africa and the Asia-Pacific region. The Americas have the lowest share – 1.4 percent.
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