India was the world’s second largest importer of major arms in 2014-18 and accounted for 9.5 per cent of the global total.
India has been among the top five arms importers in the world for decades.
A Sweden-based think tank Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) released the data in their annual report titled ‘Trends in International Arms Transfers-2018’. The assessment was done for a five-year period (2014-2018). Russia accounted for 58 per cent of Indian arms imports in 2014–18, compared with 76 per cent in 2009–13.
Israel, US and France all increased their arms exports to India in 2014-18.
According to the report, India signed several big deals with Russia recently and more are in the pipeline. These include S-400 air defense systems, four stealth frigates, AK 203 assault rifles, a second nuclear submarine on lease, and deals of Kamov 226T utility helicopters, MI 17 helicopters and a short range air defense system.
For the period 2013-2017, India accounted for 13 per cent of all imports and was the world’s largest importer.