USA – world’s largest supplier of weapons by far

Global weapons spending hits record levels

Worldwide spending on weapons has reached record levels amounting to well over $1tn last year, a leading research organisation reported today.

Global military expenditure has risen by 45% over the past decade to $1.46tn, according to the latest annual Yearbook on Armaments, Disarmament, and International Security published by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (Sipri).

Though the US accounts for more than half the total increase, China and Russia nearly tripled their military expenditure over the decade, with China now second only to the US in the military expenditure league table.

“China had both the largest absolute and the largest relative increase,” says the Sipri report. The increase “has roughly paralleled its economic growth and is also linked to its major power aspirations,” it adds.

Top 10 military spenders in 2008 ($bn):

  1. USA 607
  2. China 84.9
  3. France 65.7
  4. UK 65.3
  5. Russia 58.6
  6. Germany 46.8
  7. Japan 46.3
  8. Italy 40.6
  9. Saudi Arabia 38.2
  10. India 30

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