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The Top Seven Military Big Spenders

The Top 7 World Military Budgets by Country – the figures in the bottom axis show proportion of GDP.

 At just over $687 billion dollars a year the USA tops the charts for Military Big Spender of the World by such a big margin that we can only compare other countries with each other. However, the combined defence budgets of the 27 EU member states in 2010 amounted to $299.7 billion (1.63% of European Union GDP ). This makes the EU a significant 2nd (not represented on the chart as it is not (yet) a country).

The proportion of GDP represented by these numbers is also an interesting indication of the importance the military has in each individual country. The USA’s 4.7% is the highest of the Big Seven (which, by the way coincides roughly, percentage-wise, with the pension contribution we pay here in Finland). It is however, nowhere near the highest in the world. Check these others out!

Topping the poll for highest Military Big Spenders of the World by GDP (2009) are:

Eritrea 20.9%

Saudi Arabia 11.2%

Oman 9.7%

UAE 7.3%

Isreal 6.3%

Jordan 6.1%

Iraq 5.4%

Oh, and Finland? (It’s where I live 🙂

Finland lies at 44th, spending $3,7 billion on their military, representing 1.5% of their GDP.

Given that money is rarely spent for nothing, there seems to be significant purpose behind the bigger numbers that I have portayed here. Large military forces usually indicate either large colonial intentions, or a huge perceived threat. Now who is planning to take over and who is planning to defend has yet to be seen – history will tell.

From my point of view, the USA is the most worrying player in this millenia-old game, and I am not pointing fingers here either, but whatever they do in the world has, unfortunately, a kind of domino effect. They are the last remaining superpower, at least for the moment, and they hold more power in their hands than they realise – I hope they use it well.

Source of stats: Wikipedia

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