The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute said that Egypt’s imports increased by 136 per cent between 2011 and 2015 and 2016-2020.
“Egypt, which is involved in disputes with Turkey over hydrocarbon resources in the eastern Mediterranean, has invested heavily in its naval forces,” said the institute in its report over international arms transfers issued, on Monday.
The report showed that Middle Eastern arms imports grew by 25 per cent over the past five years, driven chiefly by Saudi Arabia (+61 per cent), Egypt (+136 per cent) and Qatar (+361 per cent). Despites a drop in Russia’s arms exports, its arms transfers increased to Egypt along with China and Algeria. At the same time, Egypt remained a top market for Germany and France. According to the report, the United States remains the largest arms exporter, increasing its global share of arms exports from 32 per cent to 37 per cent, widening the gap with the second, Russia.
France and Germany occupied the third and fourth ranks respectively. Both countries increased their share in arms exports all over the world, while China, which came fifth, declined. On the other side, the Middle East witnessed the biggest growth in arms imports, recording a 25 per cent increase over the past five years.
However, Turkey’s arms imports declined because of the increase in domestic production along with halting the F-35 combat aircrafts deal with the USA after Turkey’s deal to buy the Russian air defence system. It is noteworthy that “Israeli arms exports represented 3.0 per cent of the global total in 2016–20 and were 59 per cent higher than in 2011–15.”