Rabat- A recent report released by Stockholm International Peace Research Institute lists Morocco as the second largest arms importer in Africa, with a rate of 12 percent of imports in 2013-17. Meanwhile, Algeria tops the list of arms importers in Africa with 52 percent African arms imports.
Morocco’s main arms suppliers are the US with 52 percent share of imports, followed by France with 44 percent and Italy 1.4 percent.
Morocco ranks ahead of Nigeria, whose rate of imports accounted for 5.1 percent.
The report notes that arms reports by African nations decreased by 22 percent between 2008-2012 and 2013-2017. States in sub-Saharan Africa, according to the report, received 32 percent of total African imports between 2013 and 2017.
The top five largest sub-Saharan countries during the period were Nigeria, Sudan, Angola, Cameroon, and Ethiopia. The countries’ rate of arms imports stood at 56 percent to the subregion.
The U.S., China, and Russia are the main arms suppliers to Africa. Despite the decrease of Russian arms exports to Africa between 2013 and 2017, Russia accounted for 39 percent of total imports to the region. Algeria is the biggest beneficiary of Russia’s exports to the continent with a total 78 percent of arms transfers.
China’s arms exports to the continent saw an increase of 55 percent between 2008-12 and 2013-2017. Meanwhile, the U.S accounted for 11 percent of arms exports to Africa in 2013-2017.
The International Peace Research Institute in Stockholm, which works on research on conflict and arms control, listed Morocco the thirtieth largest arms importer in the world. whereas it was previously ranked 24th in 2016. This represents a decline of 52 percent, according to Moroccan newspaper Al Massae.
Morocco also ranked the second highest arms importer in Africa in 2016, with a rate of 15 percent. Algeria topped the list with 46 percent of imports.
Since 2012, deliveries to Morocco have reached EUR 655.2 million against 212 million for Algeria. The two countries are, along with Egypt, the main purchasers of French armaments on the continent. The report also notes that Morocco was the 10th largest buyer of French armaments in the world from 2007 to 2016.
The kingdom leads the list of military equipment orders. In 2016, Morocco ordered EUR 89.9 million in weaponry from France, compared to EUR 63.7 million by Algeria. Since 2012, Morocco’s orders totaled EUR 800.7 million, compared to EUR 295.5 million for its eastern neighbor and EUR 23.7 million for Tunisia.