Military Expenditure (As % of GDP) in South Africa

Military expenditure as a share of GDP reached 1.05 % in 2017 in South Africa, according to the SIPRI Military Expenditure Database. This is 2.71 % less than in the previous year.

Historically, military expenditure as a share of GDP in South Africa reached an all time high of 5.26 % in 1977 and an all time low of 0.951 % in 1960. When compared to South Africa's main peers, military expenditure as a share of GDP in Botswana amounted to 3.05 %, 2.23 % in Lesotho, 3.38 % in Namibia and 1.75 % in Swaziland in 2017.

South Africa has been ranked 105th within the group of 146 countries we follow in terms of military expenditure as a share of GDP, 5 places above the position seen 10 years ago.

Military expenditure is derived from the NATO definition, which includes all current and capital expenditure on the armed forces, including peacekeeping forces, defence ministries and other government agencies engaged in defence projects, paramilitary forces, if these are judged to be trained and equipped for military operations, and military space activities.


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