Defense exports bring in $ 8.3 billion despite coronavirus pandemic

Despite a difficult year marked by the global coronavirus pandemic, Israel’s military exports brought in $ 8.3 billion in defense export contracts last year, Sibat, the military exports unit of the United Kingdom, said on Monday. Department of Defense. number of deals signed compared to 2019 that brought in $ 7.2 billion and which is the second highest figure after 2017, at $ 9.3 billion. “An increase in defense exports at the height of the global pandemic is a significant achievement,” the brigadier general said. (res.) Yair Kulas, head of SIBAT, Defense and Export Cooperation Division of the Israeli Ministry of Defense, adding that Israel has remained among the world’s top 10 defense exporters. Defense Minister Benny Gantz said Israeli industries have proven themselves to be top companies, both in quality and in technological advance, even during a year of global crisis. The ministry, he continued, has worked “intensively” to deepen government agreements and “we will continue to do so.” Kulas said that despite the difficult year, there was a “significant increase” in the number of deals signed in 2020, especially with the government. He attributed the rise to the “intimate understanding of military needs” by the Israeli defense industries and stressed that “SIBAT will continue to do what is necessary to support Israeli industries, as well as deepen and develop cooperation. Israel with our partners around the world. “

A leader in defense, the world has looked to the Jewish state for security and intelligence for many years, and the Israeli defense industry has leading international companies that export to countries around the world. According to SIBAT, in 2020 Israeli companies exported, among other things, speed cameras and electronic devices. War (16%), ammunition and weaponry (16%), manned airplanes and avionics (13%), observation and optronics (13%), missiles, rockets and air defense systems (10%), weapon stations and launchers (8%), C4I and communication systems (8%), drone and drone systems (6%), intelligence, information and cyber systems (5%), vehicles and APC (3%), services and others ( 2%). The largest distribution of Israeli defense exports was in Asia-Pacific with 44% (41% on the previous year), followed by Europe with 30% (against 26%), in North America with 20 % (vs. 26% in 2019), Africa with 4 percent and Latin America with 2 (vs. 4 percent). With the signing of the Abrahamic Accords, there is “enormous potential” for agreements with the Gulf countries, Kulas said. According to Gantz, “Israel has new markets and important development opportunities that will contribute and inject billions into the local economy, create new jobs and contribute to Israel’s security. “” The entire defense establishment and SIBAT will continue to take all necessary measures to support local industries, while investing in The Periphery of Israel and contributing to the resilience of the State of Israel, ” did he declare. Israel has supplied arms to several countries accused of human rights violations. A country accused of human rights violations, Azerbaijan, is a major client of Israel. According to data compiled by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), Israel has been one of Azerbaijan’s major arms suppliers for the past five years with a turnover of over of $ 740 million. Earlier this year, fighting between Azerbaijan and Armenia in the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region saw Azeri forces use cluster munitions and suicide drones like the Israel-made Harop against Armenian forces. . No weapons have been sold to other countries accused of human rights abuses such as Myanmar and Belarus over the past year, although Kulas said the ministry feared no contracts would be signed due to the pandemic, defense budgets had been signed before the virus outbreak and countries around the world saw an incentive to sign agreements. Several European countries, he said, had contacted SIBAT to help them defend their borders during the pandemic, but Kulas said he remained concerned for the next three years as he expects a decrease in budgets and defense deals due to the pandemic. that despite the coronavirus pandemic, Israel’s military exports brought in $ 7.2 billion in defense export contracts. A 2019 SIPRI report found that Israel’s arms exports between 2015 and 2019 were the highest on record and accounted for 3% of the world total. The Jewish state turned out to be the eighth largest arms supplier in the world and its arms exports were 77% higher than between 2010-2014, SIPRI reported that Israel’s military spending was rising to $ 15.9 billion in 2018, a slight increase of 0.7% from the previous year. “After a peak in 2015 – linked to military operations in 2014 in the Gaza Strip – Israeli military spending fell 13% in 2016 and 1.0% in 2017,” the report reads.

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