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Atteeeeention! The U.S. Defense Budget

How does the U.S. defense budget compare to that of other nations — friends or foes alike?

February 25, 2002

How does the U.S. defense budget compare to that of other nations — friends or foes alike?

Terrorism has placed the United States on a war footing. Of course, that means drastic increases and changes in the U.S. defense budget. Our new Globalist Factsheet compares the new numbers proposed by President George W. Bush to the defense budgets of other nations — U.S. allies and foes alike.

What is most surprising about the U.S. defense budget?

The proposed $48 billion increase in the U.S. defense budget is equal to the entire defense budget of the next biggest military spender in the world — Russia.

(Stockholm International Peace Research Institute)

How does the U.S. defense budget compare on a global basis?

At $379 billion, U.S. defense spending is larger than the military budgets of the 15 next largest nations combined.

(The Globalist)

And how does U.S. defense spending compare to that of its NATO allies?

In 2001, the United States spent twice as much on defense as all other NATO members combined.

(New York Times)

How about Europe’s biggest economy — Germany?

The $48 billion increase in annual military spending proposed by George W. Bush on February 4, 2002, is twice the entire German defense budget.

(Wall Street Journal)

Where does the U.S. spending on defense rank in terms of its population?

As of 2002, the United States accounts for 36.2% of global defense spending, but only 5% of world’s population.

(Stockholm International Peace Research Institute)

And what picture emerges vis-à-vis China and Japan?

In 2001, China’s defense budget is estimated at around $45 billion — three times as higher than its official budget, and on a par with that of Japan. Still that is only one-seventh the U.S. level.

(Washington Post)

How much do the other Asian nuclear powers spend on defense?

As of January 2002, Pakistan spends $3.5 billion on defense — around $24 per citizen. In contrast, India spends $15 billion on defense — or $15 per citizen.

(Stockholm International Peace Research Institute)

What share of military spending does the United States account for?

As of 2001, the United States alone accounts for 70% of total military spending by the OECD. The United Kingdom is second, accounting for 9% of total spending, while France accounts for approximately 8% of the total.

(Le Monde)

What are the worldwide trends in defense spending?

Since the late 1980’s, global defense spending outside the United States has dropped 36.3% . Meanwhile, U.S. defense spending dropped only 28.1%.

(Stockholm International Peace Research Institute)

How does the United States’ defense spending compare to its budget for development aid?

As of 2002, for every dollar the US spends on development aid, it spends $30 on defense.

(The Globalist)

What do major allies of the United States spend?

Germany spends one dollar on development aid for each $5.80 it spends on defense. In France the ration is 1:6.9 — and in Great Britain 1:10.4. The average for all the world’s richest countries is 1:6.2.

(The Globalist)

How does U.S. defense spending stack up to the world’s aid to developing nations?

As of 2002, the $48 billion increase in defense spending proposed for FY2003 by U.S. President Bush is almost as large as the $54 billion that all developed nations spent on development assistance in 2001.

(The Globalist)

And for how long would the defense budget pay for development aid?

The proposed $379 billion U.S. defense budget for FY 2003 could pay for all U.S. development assistance until the year 2040.

(The Globalist)