In the year 2019, the worldwide expenditure on defense increased by four percent as compared to 2018. This was the biggest increase in any one year of the last decade.
The International Institute for Strategic Studies has already released its annual report ‘Military Balance’ at the Munich Security Conference, which includes these figures.
Defense expenses have increased in Europe too, whereas this trend was not seen before the financial crisis.
In the year 2018, European countries increased the defense budget by two percent, while last year this increase was four percent.
This indicates that the world is changing and competition between countries is returning again.
Example of Asia
In 2019, China and the United States have increased their spending on defense by 6.6%.
Although the US defense budget is constantly increasing, in the case of China, its pace is slow.
If we look at the example of Asia, with the emergence of China as a regional power, the expenditure on the defense of this continent has been increasing and this trend is going on continuously.
Asia has recorded an increase of 50% on general defense spending in the last decade. One reason for this is the increase in the GDP of Asia.
The ‘Military Balance’ report states that the problems in the international security environment have an impact on the debates related to the defense budget.
Shadow of the cold war
The modalities of international politics after the Second World War are now being challenged.
The best example of this is that all the agreements on disarmament in the world today can be felt as a shadow of the Cold War.
The ‘Military Balance’ report also mentions the disappearance of the Intermediate Rank Nuclear Force Treaty or the INF agreement.
The agreement was signed between the US and the Soviet Union for the prevention of intercontinental and short-range missiles.
The Trump administration formally ended it last year.
‘New start treaty’
Informants are also skeptical about the future of the ‘New Start Treaty’ between Russia and America to reduce nuclear weapons.
Less than a year is left for the end of the ‘New Start Treaty’.
This is the only agreement that determines the extent of the arsenals of two nuclear forces.
The concerns of NATO countries regarding Russia’s behavior remain constant and its effect can be seen on the increasing defense budget of NATO countries.
The cost of Europe is also increasing. In terms of defense spending, Europe returned to the level it was in 2019 when it was in 2008 at the time of the start of the financial crisis.
The report indicates that more money is being spent in defense procurement, research, and development.
The IISS report states that one-third of the total increase in defense spending of European countries has been from Germany alone.
According to the data, between 2018 and 2019, Germany has increased its defense budget by 9.7%.
Although NATO intends that its member countries spend two percent of their GDP on defense, Germany has not fulfilled this promise.
Only seven NATO countries have achieved this goal. They are Bulgaria, Greece, Estonia, Romania, Latvia, Poland, and Britain.
Russia and China
At the level of strategy, both Russia and China are emphasizing the use of hypersonic technology.
Under this, hypersonic gliding vehicles, hypersonic cruise missiles, and superfast systems are being deployed which can challenge the missile defense system.
The report refers to Russia’s initial action in Crimea, from Russia’s refusal to meddle in eastern Ukraine.
This report not only shows the military strength and intelligence capability of a country but also shows how ready a country is to adopt new methods.