The rapidly changing world order has been one of the most significant driving forces behind resurgence in global defense spending which has already marked the start of an upswing for the industry which is coming out of a period of significant budgetary pressures & cuts that prevailed across most traditional markets. Global defense spending registered healthy growth in 2016 and is likely to mark the start of a significant growth phase over the next decade with the pre-financial crisis levels in defense spending likely to be reached over near term. The return of conventional state based threats in a multi-polar world underscored by rapid military build- up by Russia and China has put defense on high priority and has given a kick start to defense spending globally as most nations focus on revitalizing their defense industrial base looking to build up defense capabilities, expand capacities and replace ageing equipment & systems as the focus shifts to power projection from territorial defense across some regions. Additionally, increased security threat from extremism & terrorism globally and continued war operations as well as political instability in the Middle East are likely to fuel global defense spending going forward.
The strategic focus in the U.S. remains on strategic, big-ticket & long-term replacement programs aimed at enhancing capabilities driven by cutting edge, next generation technologies; led by the LRS-B, JLTV, JMR-FVL, T-X Trainer, JSTARS & AMPV programs; that are likely to drive and spearhead defense spending in the U.S. over medium to long term. The focus in Europe, however, remains on hardware replacement along with plugging capability gaps while addressing resurgence of conventional threats and potentially significant security challenges from terrorism and extremism. The same has been underscored and highlighted with the first real increase in defense spending since 2009 for Western Europe in 2016 and projections indicating towards a further significant increase in defense spending likely by Western Europe going forward amid growing Russian threat, BREXIT and increasing U.S. diengagement as well as unpredictability towards European security. Defense spending across North, South and Eastern Europe has already been on the rise as of-late with looming Russian threat and is likely to witness further growth with European states committed to meet the NATO’s stipulated defense spending mandate over near term. Political instability, extremism and the war against ISIS are already fuelling defense spending in the Middle East while Asia-Pacific is likely to spearhead growth in defense spending over medium term with China’s rapid military build-up & regional territorial claims driving spike in defense budgets across a number of nations based in the APAC region.
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