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CIAO Focus, March 2013: Developing Nations and the Global Arms Trade
Developing nations continue to be the primary focus of foreign arms sales activity by weapons suppliers. During the years 1998-2005, the value of arms transfer agreements with developing nations comprised 66.8% of all such agreements worldwide. More recently, arms transfer agreements with developing nations constituted 64.3% of all such agreements globally from 2002-2005, and 68.4% of these agreements in 2005. The value of all arms transfer agreements with developing nations in 2005 was nearly $30.2 billion. This was a notable increase over 2004, and the highest total, in real terms, for the entire period from 1998-2005. In 2005, the value of all arms deliveries to developing nations was $17.7 billion, the lowest total in these deliveries values for the entire 1998-2005 period (in constant 2005 dollars).
Recently, from 2002-2005, the United States and Russia have dominated the arms market in the developing world, with the United States ranking first for 3 out of 4 years in the value of arms transfer agreements, with Russia ranking second for 3 out of these same four years. From 2002-2005, the United States made $33.3 billion in arms transfer agreements with developing nations, in constant 2005 dollars, 35.2% of all such agreements. Russia, the second leading supplier during this period, made $21.8 billion in arms transfer agreements, or 24.3%. Collectively, the United States and Russia made nearly 60% of all arms transfer agreements with developing nations during this four year period.
In 2005, Russia ranked first in arms transfer agreements with developing nations with $7 billion or 23.2% of these agreements. France was second with $6.3 billion or 20.9% of such agreements. The United States was third with $6.2 billion or 20.5%. In 2005, the United States ranked first in the value of arms deliveries to developing nations at $8.1 billion, or 45.8% of all such deliveries. Russia ranked second at $2.7 billion or 15.2% of such deliveries. The United Kingdom ranked third at $2.4 billion or 13.6% of such deliveries.
In 2005, India ranked first in the value of arms transfer agreements among all developing nations weapons purchasers, concluding $5.4 billion in such agreements. Saudi Arabia ranked second with $3.4 billion in such agreements. China ranked third with $2.8 billion.
--Richard F. Grimmett, Center for Defense Information
From the CIAO Database:
The UN Arms Trade Treaty: arms export
controls, the human security agenda and the lessons of history
National reports on arms exports
U.S. Arms Still Dominate International Market, Russia Leader to Developing World
Outside Sources: *
The Arms Industry (SIPRI)
Conventional Arms Transfers to
Developing Nations, 1999-2006
Inside Story - The shift in global arms trade (Al-Jazeera video)
Arms Trade (The Guardian)
Jane’s Defence Weekly
* Outside links are not maintained. For broken outside links, CIAO recommends the Way Back Machine.