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2021 Report on Military Equipment Exports has been adopted – preliminary licensing figures for 2022
The Federal Government today approved the Report on Military Equipment Exports for 2021. The report refers to the licensing decisions on military equipment exports made in the past year, providing essential information on decisions taken before the current German government took office.
According to the report, in 2021, individual licences worth €9.4 billion were issued for the export of military equipment. Historically, this is the highest annual licence value and is well above the previous year's figure of around €5.8 billion and the average of the past five years (€6.85 billion).
The maximum value for 2021 is not least based on the fact that the previous Federal Government issued large-volume licences to Egypt worth around €4 billion for the maritime sector and air defence.
Only about three per cent of the export licences (€309 million) in 2021 were approved by the new Federal Government after it took office (8 December 2021). These licences are almost exclusively for exports to EU/NATO or NATO-equivalent countries.
Of the total licences value in 2021, a share of 36.4% (2020: 49.9%) accrued to licences for exports to EU/NATO and NATO-equivalent countries. Export licences worth €5.95 billion (2020: €2.92 billion) were issued for third countries. The value relating to third countries for 2021 (€5.95 billion) is higher than the average of the annual values for licences issued for exports to third countries from 2017 to 2021, which amounts to €3.74 billion.
The total value of the licences for small arms and parts for small arms in 2021 amounted to €43.9 million (2020: €37.6 million). A total of €43.46 million of these exports (approx. 99% of the total value approved) went to EU/NATO and NATO-equivalent countries.
Licences for light weapons and parts for light weapons worth about €15.6 million were issued in 2021. A total of €14.5 million of these exports (approx. 93% of the total value approved) went to EU/NATO and NATO-equivalent countries.
For the 2021 Report on Military Equipment Exports, please click here.
Export licences for military equipment in 2022
According to preliminary figures for 2022 (up to 30 August), individual licences worth €5.28 billion were issued for the export of military equipment (of which €2.72 billion was for war weapons and €2.56 billion for other military equipment). A total of €4.01 billion, i.e. 76.1% to date (2021: 36.4%), accrued to licences for deliveries to EU/NATO and NATO-equivalent countries (of which €2.28 billion was for war weapons and €1.73 million for other military equipment). A large proportion of this is due to a large-scale multi-year procurement project in the Netherlands.
Considering the value of export licences to third countries, it can be seen that Germany's support for Ukraine accounts for a significant share of the overall amount. In total, export licences amounting to €1.26 billion have been issued for third countries to date (of which €436.66 million was spent on war weapons and €827.14 million on other military equipment). Of these, licences worth about €724.5 million were issued for exports to Ukraine. This represents a share of 57.3% of the value of all licences issued so far in 2022 for exports of military equipment to third countries.
In comparison, the share of third countries is 23.9% (2021: 63.6%; 2020: 50.1%). If the value of licences issued for exports to Ukraine and to South Korea, a partner with shared values, is considered separately, all other third countries account for €392 million in 2022 to date, i.e. 7.4% of the total licence value (2021: 61.6%). The licences for EU/NATO and NATO-equivalent countries plus Ukraine and South Korea thus account for around 92.6% of the value of all the individual export licences issued.
At €29.08 million, developing countries[i] account for a share of just 0.6% of the total value of licences issued (excluding Ukraine) in 2022 up to now (annual value in 2021: 48.9%; 2020: 18.0%).
The total value of the licences for small arms and parts for small arms in 2022 has to date amounted to €77.3 million. A total of €76.3 million of these exports (approx. 98.7% of the total value approved) has gone to EU/NATO and NATO-equivalent countries. This means that almost all the licensed exports of small arms and small arms parts have been destined for the EU and NATO partners.
Licences for light weapons and parts for light weapons worth about €166.35 million have been issued in 2022 so far. Of these, Ukraine has accounted for approximately €143.9 million, or 86.5%, of licences, and EU/NATO and NATO-equivalent countries for around €21.76 million, or 13.1%.
For more information on military equipment support for Ukraine to help the country defend itself against Russia’s war of aggression, please click here.
Military Equipment Export Control Act
Based on the coalition agreement, the Federal Government is currently drafting a military equipment control act under the leadership of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action. For the first time, the Act is intended to explicitly enshrine the Federal Government's military equipment export control in law.
State Secretary Giegold: "The Federal Government's goal is to establish a statutory, restrictive and transparent policy for exports of military equipment. The government parties have agreed to pass a military equipment export control act which is an important project for the current legislative period. The Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Climate Action plans to present the key points of the act at the beginning of autumn. The goal here is to simplify procedures for military equipment exports to allies and partners with shared values. The control of military equipment exports to third countries will be regulated in a more binding manner, with special emphasis being placed on respect for human rights. For this purpose, we are codifying the EU’s Common Position and its eight criteria, as well as the Political Principles of the Federal Government on the export of weapons and other military equipment. The Federal Government has embarked on a restrictive export policy, as reflected in the significantly lower figures for third countries in the current year. At the same time, Germany is supporting Ukraine by supplying it with equipment and weapons to help it defend itself against Russia's illegal war of aggression. In addition, the Federal Government has implemented initial improvements to the 2021 Report on Military Equipment Exports to provide greater transparency by showing the value of licences for light weapons in a more transparent manner than before."
For more information about the Military Equipment Export Control Act, please click here.
anker-i [i] Developing countries and developing territories pursuant to the list of the OECD’s Development Assistance Committee, excluding upper middle-income countries (column four of said list).