Global nuclear weapons spending surges to $91.4 billion in 2023

    WORLD  17 June 2024 - 14:02

    The latest report by the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) titled “Surge: 2023 Global Nuclear Weapons Spending” reveals that the nine nuclear-armed states have collectively spent $91.4 billion on their arsenals in 2023.

    This expenditure translates to an astonishing $2,898 per second, underscoring the immense financial resources directed towards nuclear armament, Caliber.Az reports citing the organization.

    The United States led the spending spree, allocating $51.5 billion to its nuclear arsenal, accounting for more than half of the total global expenditure and 80% of the annual increase. Following the US, China expended $11.8 billion, while Russia invested $8.3 billion. The United Kingdom saw a significant rise in its spending, reaching $8.1 billion—a 17% increase from the previous year.

    Other nuclear-armed countries, including France, India, Israel, North Korea, and Pakistan, also contributed to the global total, reflecting a sustained commitment to nuclear modernization and expansion.

    Over the past five years, global nuclear weapons spending has surged by 34%, escalating from $68.2 billion in 2018 to the current $91.4 billion. The cumulative expenditure during this period amounts to $387 billion. This upward trend highlights the persistent drive among nuclear-armed states to enhance their arsenals, posing significant threats to global security.

    The financial beneficiaries of this spending surge are companies involved in the production of nuclear weapons. In 2023 alone, these firms secured new contracts worth nearly $7.9 billion. The report also sheds light on the substantial sums spent on lobbying and influencing public policy. In the US and France, nuclear weapons manufacturers spent $118 million on lobbying efforts in 2023, further entrenching their influence on government policies.

    The allocation of $91.4 billion towards nuclear weapons represents a profound misallocation of resources. ICAN emphasizes that these funds could have been utilized to address pressing global issues. For instance, the annual nuclear weapons expenditure could finance wind power for over twelve million homes, cover 27% of the funding gap needed to combat climate change, or plant one million trees per minute. Over five years, this money could have fed 45 million people facing famine for most of their lives.

    In response to these findings, ICAN is organizing a global week of action from September 16 to 22, 2024. This initiative aims to mobilize public opinion against nuclear weapons spending and advocate for reallocating these funds to address critical global challenges. 

    Caliber.Az

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