The world heaped more than $1.6 trillion on military programs and personnel in 2015, roughly 1 percent more than in 2014, a SIPRI analyst declared at the nonpartisan Stimson Center in Washington, D.C. on April 5. The increase follows four years of decline, which was preceded by 12 years of steady increases.
So the brief falloff is over, and the familiar routine is back.
In 2015, the United States was still the world’s largest military spender — its $596 billion accounting for 36 percent of the world’s military spending, according to SIPRI’s data. China was in a distant second place, increasing its defense spending by 7.4 percent to reach an estimated $215 billion. Saudi Arabia surpassed Russia to become the third largest defense spender, spending $87.2 billion in 2015. Russian military spending was estimated at $66.4 billion. …
SIPRI’s tallies include spending on the armed forces, defense ministries, paramilitary forces, military research, space activities and peacekeeping forces.
Global military spending is increasing