Global Military Spending Up Despite Economic Crisis

Tank going up over increasing military spending bars - IllustrationAccording to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), US military spending is up 75.8% over the past 10 years (2000-2009).

In 2009, the United States reportedly spent around $661 billion on military expenditures, which was easily the highest amount of any country in the world. As a matter of fact, of the $1.531 trillion that was spent on global military expenditures in 2009, the United States accounted for a lofty 43%.

The number two country when it came to total military expenditure in 2009 was China, which reportedly spent an estimated $100 billion in 2009. This figure should rise dramatically over the coming decades.

The top five countries based on total military expenditures in 2009 looked like this:

United States - $661 billion
China - $100 billion (estimated)
France - $63.9 billion
UK - $58.3 billion
Russia - $53.3 billion (estimated)


As mentioned, US military spending is up approximately 75.8% in the past decade. This is not a surprise given the operations that have taken place in both Afghanistan and Iraq. What may be surprising to some people is the fact that military spending is expected to continue to rise under President Obama. According to SIPRI, US military spending is expected to increase to $719 billion in 2010 and $739 billion in 2011. I think that many people were under the impression that military spending under President Obama would either stabilize or even drop, especially given the current economic environment, but this has not been the case.


While the United States has increased its military spending the most in terms of total dollars spent over the past decade, countries such as China (+217%) and Russia (+105%) have posted the biggest gains in terms of a total percentage increase.

Not every country has seen their military spending increase over the past decade - in fact, Japan (-1.3%), Germany (-6.7%) and Italy (-13.3%) have all posted declines since 2000.


Some other interesting pieces of information from the report:

-many oil and gas-producing countries have seen major jumps in their military spending over the past 10 years, with Chad (+633%), Azerbaijan (+471%) and Kazakhstan (+360%) leading the way

-while the economic crisis has caused many countries to closely examine their expenditures, military spending has largely remained untouched

-military expenditures rose in both Central America and the Caribbean, largely due to a rise in drug-related violence

-total military spending in Europe was $386 billion in 2009


Despite the fact that the global recession has created chaos throughout the world, military spending has remained steady and will very likely continue to increase, regardless of whether or not the global economy starts to recover.

Source: - World Military Expenditure Increases Despite Financial Crisis

Filed under: The Economic Meltdown

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