Top 10 African countries with the highest military expenditure

Algeria military

The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) recently published its Military Expenditure Database for 2023. Data from the report showed that military spending is up in Africa, the Middle East, Europe, Asia, Oceania, and North and South America. This is the first time since 2009 that annual spending has increased in all geographical regions.

Globally, the defence budget saw its largest yearly increase in 14 years in 2023. According to the report data, a surge of military coups, the Russia-Ukrain war, and tensions in the wider region drove up military spending in Africa last year.

Further insights from the database revealed that Algeria, Morocco and Nigeria were the top spenders in the region, with the Democratic Republic of the Congo standing out as the country with the single largest increase in military spending in 2023 by percentage. Total military expenditure in South Sudan also grew by 78%, amounting to $1 billion in 2023, from $520 million in 2022. The report attributed this boost to the internal conflict and spillover effects from the civil war in neighbouring Sudan.

Xiao Liang, a researcher in SIPRI's military expenditure and arms production program, told DW that "what might be surprising is how large the increases are in the rest of the world, especially in Latin America and Africa."

"The increase itself is not too surprising, but it's the scale and scope of the increase," Liang said. "For the global trend, if the current conflicts and tensions continue, we will probably see more increase in the coming years."

Here are the top 10 African countries with the highest military expenditure in 2023

[th]Country[/th] [th]2023 Budget (in billions USD)[/th]
Algeria 18.264
Morocco 5.185
Nigeria 3.192
South Africa 2.781
Angola 1.270
Ethiopia 1.227
Tunisia 1.208
South Sudan 1.076
Kenya 0.999 (999 million)
Uganda 0.977 (977 million)


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