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China The World's No. 3 Arms Exporter After U.S., Russia

  • RFE/RL

According to the report, Russian exports increased by 37 percent between 2005-2009 and 2010-14. (file photo)

According to the report, Russian exports increased by 37 percent between 2005-2009 and 2010-14. (file photo)

China has surpassed Germany and France to become the third-largest arms exporter in the world after the United States and Russia.

The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said in its annual report on March 16 that the United States made 31 percent of all exports of conventional weapons in 2014, followed by Russia at 27 percent of the world's total.

The report says Russian exports increased by 37 percent between 2005-2009 and 2010-14.

China trailed far behind with only about 5 percent of the world's total.

However, Beijing narrowly edged out both Germany and France last year to become the world's third-largest exporter of arms.

SIPRI said 41 percent of China's exports went to Pakistan, while Russia's top buyer was India -- the world's leading arms importer.

India, together with the next four largest importers -- Saudi Arabia, China, the United Arab Emirates, and Pakistan -- accounted for one-third (33 percent) of all weapons imports.

With 61 percent, Russia's arms industry is the main source of imported weapons for China, which ranks third in both arms exports and imports. The rest of China's imports come from France -- 16 percent, and Ukraine 13 percent.

The United States had the most clients, with South Korea receiving 9 percent of U.S. weapons exports.

SIPRI said the data reflects the volume of the deliveries, not the total value of the weapons.

The report said that the first five countries together accounted for almost three-fourths (74 percent) of global arms exports.

SIPRI said that in the 2010-2014, Russia exported arms to 56 states, and also to separatist forces in eastern Ukraine.

Unlike the United States' exports, Russia's deliveries were more concentrated, with three countries -- India, China, and Algeria -- accounting for up to 60 percent of Moscow's exports.

Ukraine remains a major global arms exporters, with 3 percent of the total from 2010-2014 - an increase of 1 percent compared to 2005-2009. In the 2010-2014 interval, Ukraine's main clients were China (22 percent), Russia (10 percent), and Thailand (9 percent).

With reporting by AFP and dpa
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