L. M. ISAEV Candidate of Political Sciences A. V. KOROTAEV Doctor of Historical Sciences National Research University "Higher School of Economics" Institute of Africa, Russian Academy of Sciences Keywords: Saudi Arabia, Iran, SIPRI, "Arab spring", arms import, armed conflicts, Middle East The Stockholm Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) has published data on military spending for 2015. The ranking is traditionally led by the United States and China, whose military spending totaled $596 and $214 billion, respectively. But for the first time, Saudi Arabia seems to have come out on the 3rd place, having spent $87 billion on military needs last year, and the gap from the fourth-placed Russian Federation was just over $20 billion.1 As we will see below, in fact, Saudi Arabia surpassed Russia in 2015 only in nominal military spending, while in real military spending, Russia retained its 3rd place in the global military hierarchy. STATISTICAL FRAUD Without underestimating the rapidly growing Saudi ambitions in recent years, which have been expressed in sharply increased spending on weapons, the main factor is that Saudi Arabia has replaced the Russian Federation in the top three world leaders in military spending (and at the same time, as we will see below, only in terms of "paper" costs, and not actual ones), was a sharp drop in the ruble exchange rate. Note that as of 2015, SIPRI published two sets of estimates of military expenditures: nominal (i.e., recalculating military expenditures at the nominal exchange rate, reflecting all speculative fluctuations in the dollar exchange rate) and actual military expenditures (this estimate ignores such speculative fluctuations in exchange rates). Saudi Arabia has overtaken the Russian Federation only in nominal, but not in actual military spending. Indeed, when recalculating military spending at current speculative exchange rates, it turns out that Saudi military spending between 2014 and 2015 increased from $80.8 to $87.2 billion, ... Read more

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Japan Online
Tokyo, Japan
22.02.2024 (117 days ago)
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