MILITARY SPENDING SURGES
June 29, 2004
World military spending surged in 2003, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), with the United States being the largest contributor.
- Military spending reached $956 billion in 2003 -- an 11 percent increase over the previous year.
- This is equivalent to 2.7 percent of the world's gross domestic product (GDP).
- The United States led the world in defense spending, accounting for 47 percent of the total.
SIPRI states that the level of military spending is quickly approaching a record. Apparently, spending levels are "very close to the Cold War peak in 1987."
The rise in defense spending has coincided with other developments. SIPRI reports that:
- The number of conflicts worldwide fell to 19, the second-lowest number since SIPRI began issuing reports 35 years ago.
- Additionally, 14 separate peace missions began last year, the most since the end of the cold war.
Source: Matt Moore, "Global military spending soars: peace group," cnews.canoe.ca, June 9, 2004; based upon, "SIPRI Year Book 2004," Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, June 2004.
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