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Record-breaking $65 billion global defense trade in 2015

Staff writer |
Global defense trade reached a record-breaking $65 billion in 2015, according to the annual Global defense Trade Report by IHS.

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The report examines trends in the global defense market across 65 countries and is based upon 40,000 programmes from the IHS Aerospace, defense & Security’s Markets Forecast database.

“The global defense trade market has never seen an increase as large as the one we saw between 2014 and 2015,” said Ben Moores, senior analyst at IHS. “2015 was a record-breaking year.”

Markets rose $6.6 billion, bringing the value of the global defense market in 2015 to $65 billion. IHS forecasts that the market will increase further to $69 billion in 2016.

The Middle East was the largest importing region, with $21.6 billion in deliveries of defense equipment.

Total defense spending accelerated in Asia-Pacific as states bordering the South China Sea boosted defense spending.

France has doubled its backlog of orders from $36 billion in 2014 to $55 billion, meaning that $55 billion worth of defense equipment has yet to be exported. This increase means that France will overtake Russia as the second-largest global defense equipment exporter.

Germany moved from fifth- to third- largest exporter and the UK dropped from fourth to fifth.

The largest global exporter, the United States, saw another 10 percent increase in exports over the past year, bringing the total to $23 billion (35 percent of the global total). South Korea saw exports climb again to $871 million.

There was significant change in the top five importing countries, with Taiwan, China and Indonesia all dropping out of the top five and Australia, Egypt and South Korea replacing them.

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