Strong performance of the Israeli defence industry, in 2018 exports

Israeli military exports exceeded 7.5 billion dollars in 2018, with most of the production going to countries in the Asia-Pacific region, the Israeli Government said on Wednesday. A defense ministry spokesperson told AFP that the total was down from $9.2 billion in 2017, but that had been an exceptionally strong year.

The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute put Israel in eighth place in its 2017 top 10 of global arms exporters and said its largest clients that year were India, Azerbaijan and Vietnam. The Israeli government does not comment on individual arms sales, but Wednesday’s ministry statement said missile and air defense systems accounted for 24 percent of 2018 sales.

Unmanned aerial vehicles and drone systems amounted to 15 percent, radars and early warning systems 14 percent and aircraft and avionics 14 percent. Other areas included “land systems, ammunition and weapon stations,” intelligence and cyber systems and naval systems, it added.

“Over the past year we have signed dozens of contracts with various countries around the world,” the head of the defense ministry’s international cooperation directorate, Mishel Ben-Baruch, said in the statement.

“This serves as further evidence of the desire of more and more countries to cooperate with the state of Israel, and a sign of their confidence in the excellent capabilities of our defence industries,” he added.

Sales to Asia and the Pacific region were 46 percent of the total, the statement said, with 26 percent going to Europe, 20 percent to North America, six percent to South America and two percent to Africa.