Asia’s arms shopping spree

Asia’s arms shopping spree

The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute was come out with the latest update to its Arms Transfers Database, which shows Asian countries — particularly India — continuing to drive the global demand for small arms:

India’s military build-up, particularly in naval firepower, was FP’s top “Story You Missed” in 2011. Altogether Asian countries accounted for 44 percent of global arms imports from 2007 to 2011.

Another major development in this year’s numbers is China’s transition from weapons importer to exporter. The volume of its exports grew 95 percent between 2002-2006 and 2007-2011, making it the world’s sixth largest arms exporter after Britain.

The U.S. is still the world’s top arms supplier, accounting for 30 percent of global exports.