The Middle East has long been a strategic priority for economic and international powers who get involved in different ways: political negotiations, trade agreements or various investments.
Arms transfers represent another facet of this involvement. Since the end of the Cold War, the Middle East is one of the leading recipients of the world armaments. Indeed, military supplies to the region appear to be an automatic response of foreign powers to the challenges that face local allies.
Over the past five years, the region has concentrated more than a fifth of world imports, mainly due to purchases made by 5 states: the United Arab Emirates, Israel, Egypt, Iran and Saudi Arabia.
Among the exporters, contracts are also concluded by a small number of countries. The United States, which account for half of all exports, provide the GCC countries and Israel. It is followed by member states of the European Union whose arms have generally the same destinations. Finally, Russian and Chinese transfers are channelled to countries abandoned by Washington and Brussels.