Defence companies recession proof in 2009: SIPRI

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Despite recessionary conditions in 2009, global arms sales by the top 100 defence contractors increased by US$14.8 billion from the year before to reach US$401 billion, a real increase of 8%, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) says.

The total of sales by the “SIPRI Top 100” companies maintained an upward trend, recording an increase of 59% in real terms since 2002. Arms sales by the “Top 10” arms-producing companies approached US$228 billion, which is 56.9% of the SIPRI Top 100 total arms sales in 2009.
“US government spending on military goods and services is a key factor in arms sales increases for US arms-producing and military services companies and for Western European companies with a foothold in the US arms and military services market,” says SIPRI arms industry expert Dr Susan Jackson.

Of the SIPRI Top 100 arms-producing companies, 78 are based in the United States and Western Europe. These companies generated US$368 billion in total arms sales, which is 91.7% of the total. Forty-five of the SIPRI Top 100 are based in the USA and generated just under US$247 billion in total arms sales, which is 61.5% of sales. Thirty-three of the SIPRI Top 100 are based in nine Western European countries – Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK – and generated US$120 billion in sales, which is 30% of the total. The bulk of these companies – 26- are based primarily in France, Germany, Italy and the UK. Ten of the SIPRI Top 100 are based in Asia (three in India, four in Japan, one in Singapore, two in South Korea), excluding China, and seven in the Middle East (three in Israel, one in Kuwait, one in Turkey). No African-owned company made the list. The SIPRI Top 100 companies in Asia and the Middle East generated US$24 billion in combined sales, which is 6% of the total.

SIPRI defines arms sales as sales of military goods and services to military customers, including both sales for domestic procurement and sales for export. The Sweden-based think tank created its Arms Industry Database in 1989. It currently contains financial and employment data on arms-producing companies in all OECD and developing countries except China. Figures for a country or region refer to the arms sales of the SIPRI Top 100 companies headquartered in that country or region, including those in its foreign subsidiaries. As such they do not reflect the sales of arms actually produced in that country or region.

The SIPRI Top 10 arms-producing companies, 2009 (by arms sales)

Rank

Company

Country

Arms sales

(US$ m.)

Share of Top

100 total arms

sales (%)

1

Lockheed Martin

USA

33 430

8.3

2

BAE Systems*

UK

33 250

8.3

3

Boeing

USA

32 300

8.1

4

Northrop Grumman

USA

27 000

6.7

5

General Dynamics

USA

25 590

6.4

6

Raytheon

USA

23 080

5.8

7

EADS**

EU

15 930

4

8

Finmeccanica

Italy

13 280

3.3

9

L-3 Communications

USA

13 010

3.2

10

United Technologies

USA

11 110

2.8

* If BAE Systems’ US-based subsidiary (BAE Systems, Inc.) were a parent company, its armssales would place it at seventh in the Top 100 for 2009. Its 2009 arms sales were US$19 280 million.

** EADS’ shareholder structure is: 22.46% Sogeade (Lagadere and French state holding company); 22.46% Daimler (% represents voting rights); 5.48% SEPI (Spanish state holding company); 0.06% the French state (shares held out of contractual partnership); 49.12% institutional, retail and employee ownership; and 0.39% Treasury shares (without economic or voting rights). EADS is headquartered in the Netherlands.



The full top 100 is available at: http://www.sipri.org/research/armaments/production/Top100