Between 2014 and 2018, one-third of all global arms
exports came from the United States. The U.S. sold arms to 98 states. According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute
, the top five weapons exporters were responsible for three-quarters of all global arms exports over that same period.
Historically, the United States and Russia, previously the Soviet Union, have always been neck-in-neck when it comes to arms manufacturing and exporting. While the U.S. and Russia remain the top two exporters, the U.S. has pulled away from Russia during this time frame. Between 2009 and 2013, U.S. exports were 12 percent higher than Russian exports; between 2014 and 2018 U.S. arms exports were 75 percent higher than Russia’s.
Countries in Asia and Oceania are the biggest importers of weapons. The Middle East was the second biggest importer of arms, with the sharpest increase over the time period. While arms imports to all other regions decreased between 2008-2013 and 2014-2018, arms imports between those two time periods increased for the Middle East.