Tuesday, 10 January 2012

EDA releases Defence data 2010

The Defence Data exercise has been running for five years, based on agreed categories and definitions. It is a well-established and recognized exercise. Data are always from the previous year, because they are the most reliable.

Analysis has been conducted over period 2006-2010. The data given now to the media are only collective figures. It should be noted that there are big differences between individual Member States. National breakdown data will be provided by mid-January after the standard consultation process has taken place asking for authorisation (the data are owned by the pMS; EDA is only the custodian of the data).


In 2010, total defence spending by EDA 26 pMS remained constant at EUR 194 billion. This represents 1.6% of total GDP or 3.2% of Total Government Expenditure. However, if inflation is taken into account, we can see that defence spending in real terms decreased not only in 2010 but it has been decreasing since 2006.

Personnel-related expenditure represents 50% of total defence expenditure. The second biggest component of defence spend is Operation and Maintenance with a share of 23% amounting to EUR 44 billion, followed by Investment which takes up almost EUR 43 billion or a share of 22%, the highest since 2006 both in absolute value and share of total defence budget.

Analysing now the different Investment components, in 2010 equipment procurement (which represents 80% of total Investment) increased by 5.5% reaching EUR 34 billion. Research and Technology (R&T, including basic research, applied research and technology demonstration, leaving out expenditure for demonstration) it continues in a decreasing trend, amounting in 2010 to about EUR 2 billion.

Looking at European Collaboration, in 2010 collaborative equipment procurement increased for the fourth consecutive year and is now more than EUR 7.5 billion. This represents 22% of the total defence equipment procurement, the same as in 2009 but still the highest share since 2006. As for European Collaboration in R&T, it decreased for the second year being now at its lowest value since 2006, EUR 246 million and the lowest share of total R&T expenditure since 2007, 11.8%.

As for personnel, in 2010 there was a reduction, continuing an already 4 year trend. Military staff, which represents 80% of total defence staff decreased by almost 3% to 1.62 million. Civilian staff decreased by more than 8% and went below 390 thousand. Despite this decrease in personnel numbers, after a drop of EUR 9 billion in 2009, the total personnel expenditure increased marginally in 2010 from EUR 98.4 billion to EUR 98.7 billion.

Turning now to deployed operations outside the EU territory, similar to what happened in 2009, in 2010 the average number of troops deployed throughout the year decreased (from 68 to 66 thousand) and was now at its lowest value since 2006. However, the costs with the deployment of troops increased in 2010 for the fourth consecutive year reaching EUR 10 billion (or 5% of total defence expenditure). If we look at the operation costs per military deployed we see that they have been steadily increasing and the 157 thousand euros of 2010 represent almost the double as the value in 2006.

Note: The figures refer to the total for all EDA 26 pMS and if not otherwise stated, they are nominal.

The Defence Data booklet is available here.
EDA’s Defence Data portal is available here.