Conventional Arms Transfers to Developing Nations, 1995-2002

Article excerpt

[The following are extracts from the unclassified report of the Conventional Arms Transfers to Developing Nations as published under the above title by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) on September 22, 2003. [Tables 3 through 9D are not included in this extract.] Macro data on worldwide arms transfer agreements and deliveries are also included. The selections included herein begin with a discussion of major research findings regarding the dollar value of both arms transfer agreements and arms deliveries to the developing countries from 1995 through 2002. These findings are all cross-referenced to comparative data tables which are presented following the textual material. Special attention is given to the roles of the United States, the former Soviet Union, and China as arms suppliers, and to identification of the leading Third World arms recipient nations. The report concludes with a listing of the type and quantity of weapons delivered to developing nations by major arms suppliers in the 1995-2002 time period. Copies of the complete document are available from the Foreign Affairs and National Defense Division, Congressional Research Service, the Library of Congress, Washington DC 20540 or an electronic copy is available at http://fpc.state.gov/documents/organization/24641.pdf.]

Summary

This report is prepared annually to provide unclassified quantitative data on conventional arms transfers to developing nations by the United States and foreign countries for the preceding eight calendar years. Some general data are provided on world wide conventional arms transfers, but the principal focus is the level of arms transfers by major weapons suppliers to nations in the developing world.

Developing nations continue to be the primary focus of foreign arms sales activity by weapons suppliers. During the years 1995-2002, the value of arms transfer agreements with developing nations comprised 66.2 percent of all such agreements worldwide. More recently, arms transfer agreements with developing nations constituted 64.6 percent of all such agreements globally from 1999-2002, and 60.6 percent of these agreements in 2002.

The value of all arms transfer agreements with developing nations in 2002 was nearly $17.7 billion. This was an increase over 2001, but still the second lowest total, in real terms, for the entire period from 1995-2002. In 2001, the value of all arms deliveries to developing nations was nearly $17 billion, the lowest total in deliveries values for the entire period from 1995-2002 (in constant 2002 dollars).

Recently, from 1999-2002, the United States and Russia have dominated the arms market in the developing world, with the United States ranking first and Russia second each of the last four years in the value of arms transfer agreements. From 1999-2002, the United States made $37.8 billion in arms transfer agreements with developing nations, (in constant 2002 dollars), 41.9 percent of all such agreements. Russia, the second leading supplier during this period, made $23 billion in arms transfer agreements, or 25.5 percent. France, the third leading supplier from 1999-2002, made $4.8 billion or 5.3 percent of all such agreements with developing nations during these years.

In 2002, the United States ranked first in arms transfer agreements with developing nations with nearly $8.6 billion or 48.6 percent of these agreements. Russia was second with $5 billion or 28.3 percent of such agreements. France ranked third with $1 billion or 5.3 percent of such agreements. In 2002, the United States ranked first in the value of arms deliveries to developing nations at $7 billion, or 41 percent of all such deliveries. The United Kingdom ranked second at $3.3 billion or 19.5 percent of such deliveries. Russia ranked third at $2.9 billion or 17.1 percent of such deliveries.

During the 1999-2002 period, China ranked first among developing nations in the value of arms transfer agreements, concluding $11. …