Thursday, July 01, 2021
But more small arms are delivered
German arms exports are falling
German exports fell noticeably during the corona pandemic. This also affects the export of weapons and other military equipment. In the first half of 2021, almost 18 percent fewer were exported. The largest customer is a neighboring country.
In the first half of this year, Germany approved significantly fewer arms exports abroad than in the same period last year. From January to June, the federal government issued individual permits for arms exports worth a total of 2.3 billion euros, according to the Federal Ministry of Economics. In the first half of 2020, the total was just under 2.8 billion euros. The decrease is therefore just under 18 percent.
The majority of the permits – namely 78 percent – were granted for exports to NATO or EU states or to states that are on an equal footing with NATO in matters of arms exports. The Ministry of Economic Affairs pointed out that Germany “has a particularly close security partnership” with these countries. For exports to the other countries, permits worth 499 million euros have been approved. Last year, this sum was significantly higher at 1.74 billion euros.
According to the ministry, the total value of the licenses for small arms and small arms parts amounted to 22.5 million euros in the first half of 2021 – after 18.9 million euros in the same period of the previous year. In turn, EU / NATO and NATO-equivalent countries accounted for 99.9 percent of the license value for these weapons.
USA is only the second largest importer of German weapons
By far the largest recipient countries were the Netherlands (permits for 706.9 million euros) and the USA (430.7 million euros). This was followed by Great Britain (149.1 million euros), Austria (104.1 million euros), Brazil (90.6 million euros), Ecuador (72.4 million euros), Thailand (62.9 million euros) and Switzerland ( 57.2 million euros).
The Federal Security Council is responsible for the export permits. The committee meets in secret. The permanent members of the Federal Security Council are the Defense Minister, the Foreign Minister, the Interior Minister, the heads of finance, economy and justice as well as the Development Minister and the head of the Federal Chancellery.