India remains world’s largest arms importer: SIPRI report

Recently, Stockholm-based defence think-tank SIPRI (Stockholm International Peace Research Institute) has released a report on global arms transfers for a period between 2018-22.

Major Highlights:


  • The five largest arms importers in the world during 2018-22 were India, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Australia and China.
  • The five largest arms exporters were the United States, Russia, France, China and Germany.
  • The United States’ share of global arms exports increased from 33 to 40%, while Russia’s fell from 22 to 16%.
  • While arms transfers have declined globally, those to Europe have risen sharply due to the tensions between Russia and other European states.


  • India remained the world’s top arms importer, but its imports declined by 11% between 2013-17 and 2018-22.
  • The decline was linked to a complex arms procurement process, efforts to diversify arms suppliers and attempts to replace imports with indigenous designs.
  • Russia accounted for 45% India’s arms imports followed by France (29%) and the US (11%). Russia was the largest supplier of arms to India in both 2013–17 and 2018–22, but its share of total Indian arms imports fell from 64% to 45%.
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