Issue Brief on “Rising World Military Spending in the Age of Pandemic: An Overview”

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The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) in its latest “SIPRI Fact Sheet” of April 2021, published data on world military expenditure and estimated that the “total global military expenditure rose to US$1981 billion in 2020, an increase of 2.6 per cent in real terms from 2019.”[1] Earlier the year 2019, with an estimated military expenditure of US$1917 billion, witnessed the largest annual increase of 3.6 per cent in the decade.[2] It is surprising now that despite the contraction of the global economy due to the COVID-19 pandemic, world military expenditure in terms of the share of the GDP rose to 2.4 per cent in 2020 as compared to 2.2 per cent in 2019. According to the SIPRI, this was the biggest year-on-year rise in the military burden since the global financial and economic crisis in 2009.[3]

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