Israeli Arms Exports Spike 30%, Hit All-time High

Israel’s defense exports have surged by 55 percent over the past two years, says the head of the defense ministry’s International Defense Cooperation Directorate

Yaniv Kubovich
Yaniv Kubovich
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The Iron Dome air defense system launches to intercept a rocket from the Gaza Strip, in Ashkelon, southern Israel, in May.
The Iron Dome air defense system launches to intercept a rocket from the Gaza Strip, in Ashkelon, southern Israel, in May.Credit: Ariel Schalit/AP
Yaniv Kubovich
Yaniv Kubovich

Israel’s defense exports hit an all-time high in 2021, coming to $11.3 billion, the Defense Ministry said on Tuesday.

Also for the first time, the ministry’s statement detailed the percentage of these exports that went to the Gulf States that have peace treaties with Israel – seven percent.

Altogether, defense exports were up 30 percent in 2021 compared to the previous year, when they totaled $8.55 billion.

Europe accounted for the largest share of Israel’s defense exports last year, 41 percent. And that was before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which is expected to increase defense exports to the continent even further.

Asia and the Pacific accounted for another 34 percent and North America for 12 percent. South America and Africa accounted for three percent each.

Missiles, rockets and aerial defense systems comprised 20 percent of last year’s exports. Training services accounted for 15 percent, drones for nine percent, radar and electronic warfare nine percent, manned aircraft and electronic systems for planes nine percent, firing and launching equipment seven percent, and intelligence, information and cyber four percent.

Over the past two years, Israel’s defense exports have surged by 55 percent, according to Yair Kulas, the head of the ministry’s International Defense Cooperation Directorate, known by its Hebrew acronym SIBAT.

“Looking ahead, the war in Ukraine, alongside the Abraham Accords, create high demand for Israeli systems on the leading edge of technology,” he added, referring to Israel’s peace agreements with the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain. “The Defense Ministry is working together with the industries to continue this trend of export growth and even intensify it.”

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