The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) estimated that global military expenditure
totalled 1.73 trillion dollars in 2017, up 1.1 per cent on 2016.
SIPRI said that translated into 230 dollars per person.
The U.S. remained the world’s largest spender with 610 billion dollars, unchanged year-on-year.
The U.S. accounted for over a third of global military expenditure.
“The downward trend in US military spending that started in 2010 has come to an end,” said Aude Fleurant,
head of SIPRI’s arms and military expenditure programme.
Second-placed China was estimated to have spent 228 billion dollars, and according to SIPRI accounted for
the largest absolute increase in spending – 12 billion dollars, measured in constant 2016 prices.
The research institute said it estimated that China’s share of global spending has doubled since 2008 to
13 per cent.
Saudi Arabia replaced Russia in third place, spending 69.4 billion dollars in 2017.
The Middle East was the region where military spending was estimated to account for the highest portion of
GDP, just over five per cent, although SIPRI said data was sketchy from several countries including Syria,
the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Yemen.
“In spite of low oil prices, armed conflict and rivalries throughout the Middle East are driving the rise in
military spending in the region,” said Pieter Wezeman, senior researcher with the SIPRI programme.