A new report published by a leading international arms control research institute says the total value of international arms deals between 2016 and 2020 is essentially flat compared to the previous five years. The New Crown virus pandemic has caused a major setback to economies around the world, though researchers say it may be too early to think the New Crown Epidemic will continue to cool the arms trade.
A report released Monday (March 15, 2021) by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute said the United States, France and Germany have increased arms exports over the past five years and Russia and China have seen lower exports; Middle Eastern countries have seen an increase in arms imports over the past five years, with Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest arms importer, seeing a 61 percent increase in arms imports over the past five years compared to the previous five years, and cartels increasing by 361 percent.
Asia and Oceania continue to be the largest importers of arms, accounting for 42 percent of global arms transactions over the past five years, the report said. India, Australia, China, South Korea and Pakistan are the largest arms buyers in the region.
Siemon Wezeman, a senior researcher at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, said, “For many countries in Asia and Oceania, the growing Perception of China as a security threat is the main reason for their large arms imports.”
The institute’s report, published in December 2020, showed that the United States and China dominated the global arms sales market in 2019, accounting for most of the world’s top 25 weapons manufacturers; the four largest Chinese weapons manufacturers increased their sales in 2019 by 4.8 percent over the previous year to $56.7 billion.