India's arms imports from U.S. up by 550%

Casey Dawson
March 13, 2018

The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (Sipri) said that global transfer of major weapons systems between 2013 and 2017 rose by 10 per cent compared with the five-year period before that, in a continuation of an upward trend that began two decades ago, reports the Guardian.

India's arms imports accounted for 12 per cent of the total arms transfers in the world.

The U.S. recorded a blazing growth in its arms exports to India, recording over 550% growth in 2013-17 compared with the previous five years.

Almost half of USA arms exports over the past five years have gone to the war-stricken Middle East, with Saudi Arabia consolidating its place as the worlds second biggest importer, a report revealed on Monday.

The flow of arms increased to Asia, while there was a decrease in the flow to Africa, the Americas and Europe between 2008 and 2012 and 2013-17.

It supplied arms to as many as 98 states worldwide, accounting for more than a third of global exports. A majority of these weapons have been procured by countries in India's neighbourhood.

China is the fifth biggest arms supplier in the world and also supplies the most weapons to India's neighbours, a study by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute has shown.

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According to Siemon Wezeman, a senior researcher with the SIPRI Arms and Military Expenditure Programme, the tension in recent past with both Pakistan and China have led to the increase in growing demands of weapon, which India does not produce itself.

During the same period, China's weapons exports to Pakistan augmented by healthy 35pc and the latter remained biggest buyer of Chinese-made weapons.

"Yet the US and European states remain the main arms exporters to the region and supplied over 98% of weapons imported by Saudi Arabia". "India's arms imports from Israel also increased (by 285 per cent), making Israel the third largest supplier to India", the report further says. The United Arab Emirates was the fourth largest importer in 2013-17, while Qatar (the 20th largest arms importer) increased its arms imports and signed several major deals in that period. Despite its continuing tensions with India and ongoing internal conflicts, Pakistan's arms imports decreased by 36 per cent between 2008-12 and 2013-17.

India is the world's largest weapon importer with 12% over the period under review.

The study said that there has been significant increase of 24 per cent in India's weapon import between 2008-12 and 2013-17.

China's arms imports fell by 19 percent between 2008-12 and 2013-17. China was the fifth largest arms exporter, with Pakistan the main recipient of its arms. However, arms imports from the United States of America rose by 557 per cent between 2008-12 and 2013-17, making it India's second largest arms supplier. "Major ongoing arms deals in 2017 included the delivery of combat aircraft from China and Russian Federation", it says. Venezuela's arms imports fell by 40 percent between the two periods.

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