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Oil, arms, and corruption: a poisonous nexus?

June 30, 2015

Excerpt from an OUPblog article, published on 14th June, by Sam Perlo-Freeman, Head of SIPRI's Military Expenditure Project.

SIPRI Yearbook 2014

"While world military spending has fallen slightly in recent years, some regions, notably Africa and the Middle East, have seen continuing rapid increases. When SIPRI published our annual military expenditure data for 2014 this April, we featured a list of the 20 countries with ‘military burdens’ – the share of military expenditure in GDP – above 4%. This compares with only 13 in 2005.

There are three features that are notable of these countries. First, not surprisingly, many (14) were either in conflict or had a recent history of armed conflict. Second, only 3 of the 20 were functioning democracies. The third feature was oil: 13 of the 20 countries, and all of the top seven (Oman, Saudi Arabia, South Sudan, Chad, Libya, the Republic of Congo, and Algeria) are major oil producers."

Discover more: Read more in Sam's article 'Oil, arms, and corruption: a poisonous nexus'. Editions of the SIPRI Yearbook from 2010 and onwards are available on SIPRI Yearbook Online, offering expert analysis on world affairs and the state of global security - find out how to access this essential resource.