The war in Ukraine causes record world spending on military weapons.

A government official said that global military spending had hit an all-time high over the past year as Russia’s war in Ukraine has fueled the biggest annual increase in spending in Europe since the end of the Cold War three decades ago. An important group of experts in conflicts and weapons.

World military spending increased by 3.7% in real terms in 2022, reaching $2.24 trillion, according to a statement from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began in February last year after years of rising tensions and has prompted European countries to rush to bolster their defenses.

Moscow claims that its “special military operation” was necessary to protect itself from what it sees as a hostile and aggressive West. Ukraine and its Western allies claim that Russia is waging an unprovoked war intending to seize territory.

European military spending soared 13% last year, mainly due to increases in Russia and Ukraine, but with many countries across the continent also increasing military budgets and planning for more amid rising tensions.

In the words of Diego Lopes da Silva, principal investigator of SIPRI, “This includes multi-year plans by various governments to increase spending.” “As a result, we can reasonably expect military spending in Central and Western Europe to continue to increase in the coming years.”

Ukraine’s military expenditures increased by 640% in 2022, the highest yearly increase in SIPRI records dating back to 1949. This is in addition to the massive quantities of Western military and financial help.

SIPRI estimated that US military aid to Ukraine accounted for 2.3% of total US military spending in 2022. Although the US was by far the largest spender in the world, its total spending increased only marginally. in actual terms.

Meanwhile, Russia’s military spending grew by about 9.2%, although SIPRI acknowledged that the figures were “highly uncertain given the increasing cover-up by financial authorities” since the war in Ukraine began.

“The difference between Russia’s budget plans and its actual military spending in 2022 suggests that the invasion of Ukraine has cost Russia much more than it had anticipated,” said Lucie Beraud-Sudreau, director of the Military Spending and Production Program Of Arms of SIPRI.

The United States alone accounted for 39% of world military spending. Along with China, which came in second with 13%, the two nations accounted for more than half of global military spending. The next on the list were far behind, with Russia at 3.9% and India at 3.6%.

In 2022, military spending in Europe rose by 13% from the previous year. The thinking group argued that this number understates actual spending since it fails to account for substantial inflation.

This is the biggest rise in spending in over 30 years and brings us back to the level we were at in 1989 when the Berlin Wall came down when adjusted for inflation.

Great Britain is the European country that spends the most: it ranks sixth and represents 3.1% of world spending, ahead of Germany (2.5%) and France (2.4%), figures that include donations to Ukraine.

Countries like Poland, the Netherlands and Sweden are among the European countries that have increased their military investments the most over the past decade.

Modern and expensive weaponry also explains some spending increases, as in the case of Finland, which last year bought 64 US F-35 fighters.

In the Middle East, Saudi Arabia increased its spending by 16%, becoming the fifth-highest-spending country in the world. Qatar, which has expanded its military and is improving its weapons inventories, increased its spending by 27%.

Japan’s defense spending rose 5.9% in Asia to $46 billion, ranking it 10th worldwide. South Korea, which spent $46.4 billion, rose to ninth place.

Late last year, Japan decided to purchase so-called counter-coup capabilities and double its defense spending, in a dramatic reversal of its postwar security policy under the nation’s war-renounced Constitution amidst the growing threats North Korea and China posed.

Reuters