4 of 5 Fastest-growing Defense Markets Are in Mideast, Report Shows

Global defense spending to increase for the first time since 2009, according to the IHS Jane’s Annual Defense Budgets Review.

Global defense spending is set to increase for the first time since 2009, particularly among countries in the Middle East, Asia and Russia, according to the IHS Jane’s Annual Defense Budgets Review, released on Monday.

“Russia, Asia and the Middle East will provide the impetus behind the growth in global military spending expected this year and will drive the recovery projected from 2016 onwards,” said Paul Burton, director of IHS Jane’s Aerospace, Defense and Security, in a statement.

The study found that four of the five fastest-growing defense markets last year were in the Middle East. Oman and Saudi Arabia have increased their military budgets by more than 30 percent in the last two years, while the latter's defense budget has tripled in 10 years, the review showed.

Iraq and Bahrain also featured in the top five growth markets for 2013.

“We have seen a rapid acceleration of defense spending in the Middle East since 2011,” said Fenella McGerty, a senior IHS analyst, in a statement.

Overall global defense spending is projected to reach $1.547 trillion this year, up 0.6 percent increase from last year’s $1.538 trillion, according to the review, which adjusted for inflation. That marks the first increase since 2009.

The U.S. spent the most – an estimated $582.4 billion -- on defense last year, followed by China, with $139.2 billion. Russia spent $68.9 billion and is projected to increase defense spending by more than 44 percent over the next three years.

Israel's defense budget stood at $15 billion in 2013.