Which country has the best armed force?

Countries with the largest armed forces on earth

Armed forces statistics

Number of countries covered152

The United States currently has the largest armed force

The country with the currently largest armed force is the USA. Compared to 2009, the country spends up to 17 percent less money on the military today. Even so, the previous budget was still around $ 649 billion. These expenditures correspond to around 3.2 percent of the gross domestic product. In second place is China with an estimated annual budget of $ 250 billion. With this value, the Asian country has increased its expenditure on training and maintaining the armed forces by an unbelievable 83 percent since 2009. According to SIPRI estimates, maintaining the military is worth around 8.8 percent of total gross domestic product to Saudi Arabia. As a result, spending on military investments in Saudi Arabia has also increased significantly in recent years. The budget is likely to amount to around 67.6 billion US dollars per year.

Countries like India or France occupy top places

India follows on in fourth place. The numbers speak for themselves: With an annual budget of around 66.5 billion US dollars, investments in armed forces have increased by around 29 percent since 2009. In contrast, France currently ranks fifth with an annual budget of 63.8 billion US dollars. This means that France ranks higher than last year. One of the biggest surprises is probably Russia. With an annual budget of 61.4 billion US dollars, the country even loses two places in the ranking. Nevertheless, the investment costs for the military have still increased by around 27 percent since 2009. Countries like Great Britain, Germany, Japan, South Korea and Turkey rank next.

Tips for handling the information

A few things should be mentioned about these statistics. Many of these countries hide precise information about their troop strengths. One example of this is the country of China, about which the information is therefore based on estimates by the American secret service. Other states, however, officially publish the exact data on the armed forces. There are also some countries that have no armed forces at all or have no units that can be designated as armed forces. In particularly small countries or island states, the transition from police to military is often fluid. These countries are therefore more likely to be viewed as states without a military. In addition, the size of the defense budget should only be used as a guide. Because the defense budget often also receives money from other departments. For example, it is common for smaller countries with a weak economy to be promoted and supported by larger states with so-called military aid.

Variants of this comparison

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Further country comparisons

“Defense spending