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Türkiye among world’s top military spenders, shows report – Latest News

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ISTANBUL

Türkiye was among the world’s top military spenders in 2023, according to a new report by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI).

The country’s military spending amounted to $15.8 billion last year, ranking 22nd in the world, climbing one spot from 2022.

Türkiye’s military spending increased by 37 percent in 2023 compared to the previous year, while the change since 2014 was 59 percent, showed the SIPRI report released on April 22.

The share of military spending in the country’s GDP was 1.5 percent, while military spending accounted for 1.9 percent of national income in 2014.

Türkiye accounted for 0.6 percent of global military spending last year, according to the report.

Türkiye has been investing heavily in the defense industry to reduce its dependency on foreign countries and to position itself as a key player in the global arms market.

As a result of those efforts, exports of the Turkish defense and aerospace industry climbed to a record $5.5 billion last year, rising from $4.4 billion in 2022.

The local defense industry’s exports stood at $248 million in 2002, surpassing the $1 billion-mark for the first time in 2011.

Global military expenditure saw its steepest increase in over a decade in 2023, reaching an all-time high of $2.4 trillion as wars and rising tensions fueled spending across the world, researchers at SIPRI said in the report.

Military spending rose across the globe with particularly large increases in Europe, the Middle East and Asia, according to SIPRI.

Total global military expenditure increased by 6.8 percent in real terms from 2022.

The U.S., China, Russia, India and Saudi Arabia were the top five spenders.

The continuation of the war in Ukraine led to an increase in spending by Ukraine, Russia and “a whole host” of European countries, said Nan Tian, a senior researcher at SIPRI.

The U.S., which spends more on its military than any other nation, increased spending by 2.3 percent to $916 billion, while China boosted spending on its military for the 29th straight year, raising it by another 6 percent to an estimated $296 billion.

Russia’s military spending rose by 24 percent, reaching $109 billion in 2023. Since 2014, when Russia annexed Ukraine’s Crimea, the country’s military spending has risen by 57 percent.

India, meanwhile, hiked spending by 4.2 percent, to $83.6 billion while Saudi Arabia, the Middle East’s largest spender, also upped its spending by 4.3 percent to an estimated $75.8 billion last year.

Ukraine’s military spending rose by 51 percent, reaching $64.8 billion, but the country also received $35 billion in military aid, of which the majority came from the U.S., meaning the combined aid and spending equaled over nine tenths of Russia’s spending.

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