Middle East Defense Spending Fuels Security Dilemma
February 4, 2015 by IPB
Written by Madeleine Moreau
Countries in the Middle East are spending more on defense than ever before. In 2013, four of the top five fastest growing defense markets were in the Middle East, most notably in Saudi Arabia and Oman. Defense spending in the MENA region accounts for 7.8% of worldwide expenditures, up from 5.2% in 2008.
Defense budgets among rich Middle Eastern countries are likely to continue to rise over the next five years. The increasing threat of radical groups such as the Islamic State, along with the sharpening divide between Sunnis and Shias in Iraq, Syria and Lebanon has created a tense security dilemma throughout the region. Nations are likely to continue maintaining defense as a key pillar to foreign policy efforts, even as the price of oil remains low. Read more…