According to the figures revealed by the Stockholm Peace Research Institute (Sipri) on Monday, India’s military expenditure has been increased by 8.5% in 2016, building it as the world’s fifth largest spender at $55.9 billion. The reports said that the US still remains at the top with world’s largest military spender recording the growth of 1.7 percent between 2015 and 2016 to $611 billion. Some other countries like China, Japan, Australia and South Korea also able to come into the list of the top 15 spenders.
In April, India has signed billion-dollar deals for the execution of two contracts to buy advanced medium range surface to air systems from Israel and 155mm/52-calibre tacked self-proclaimed artillery guns from South Korea. China came second on the list as they are spending $215 billion, which is an increase of 2.4 percent. The SIPRI report also said that the growth rate was “much lower” than the last some years. Coming to a country with a third largest spender, Russia increased its expenses by 5.9 percent to $69.2 billion and becomes the third largest spender in the list. Saudi Arabia came in the fourth position in 2016, was at number 3 position in 2015. Shockingly, it’s spending decreased by 30 percent in 2016 to $63.7 billion, in spite of the fact that it was constantly involved in regional wars.
Talking about India’s border-sharing country Pakistan, they were not even able to get a place in the top 15 spenders. Pakistan spent just $9.93 billion. The report also said that the 2016 figures of US remained 20% lower than its max out performance in 2010. “The growth in US military expenditure in 2016 may signal the end of a trend of decreases in spending, which resulted from the economic crisis and the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan and Iraq,” the report said. The director of the SIPRI Arms and Military expenditure (AMEX) programme, Aude Fleurant, said that “Despite continuing legal restraints on the overall US budget, increases in military spending were agreed upon by congress. Future spending platforms remain uncertain due to the changing political situation in the US.”
The Military expenditure in Western Europe rose for the second consecutive year and it was up by 2.6 percent. On the other hand, economic problems and failing oil revenue led to oil-shock price has forced many oil-exporting countries to reduce military spending. Talking about last year’s global military spending, it was accounted for 2.2 percent of the global GDP. The military spending as a share of GDP, was lowest in the Americas with an average of 1.3 percent, whereas highest in the Middle East with an average of 6.0 percent.
Talking about the big weapons and systems where India has contracted for or will soon place an order for are MRSAM systems, M777 ultra-light howitzers, 155mm/52-calibre tracked self-propelled guns, Anti-tank guided missiles (ATGM), Rafale fighter jets, Attack and heavy-lift helicopters and Minesweepers. There is no doubt that India is spending its money wisely on the military, weapons, and systems. It is one of the biggest reasons why India became world’s fifth-largest military spender.