In 2018, British defense exports ascended to Pounds 14bn selling to Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar and other Middle Eastern countries reckoning for approximately 80%.
It is observed that Britain was ‘arming and supporting repressive regimes’. Department for International Trade (IDT) verified UK had returned to its position as the world’s second-largest arms exporter after the US.
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The orders increased by pounds 5bn to pounds 14bn. It is the leading year since 1983. The boost was from the order of Typhoon fighters made by BAE Systems and Paveway missiles from Raytheon that are partly made in the UK.
The campaign was started against Arms Trades and ‘exposed the rank hypocrisy at the heart of UK foreign policy. The government claims to stand for human rights and democracy, but is arming and supporting repressive regimes and dictatorships around the world’.
Sales to Saudi Arabia are leading an ongoing legal battle. Ministers have filed a case in the Supreme Court about the illegal selling of arms to Riyadh. In June, the court assumed the sales of arms to be unlawful because ministers failed to provide any evidence in violating the International Humanitarian Law (IHL).
IDT estimates the UK’s share of the defense export industry to be about 19%, as of 2014 report. Russia is on 3rd and France is on 4th. The US is the world leader shares about 40% of the economy.