2016 was a successful year for Israeli defense industry. The Ministry of Defense International Defense Cooperation Authority (SIBAT) data published show that exports of weapons systems and technologies totaled $6.5 billion, an $800 million up (14%) compared with $5.7 billion from the previous year.
The Israeli defense industries succeeded in signing 20% of defense exports in 2016. Dozens of significant contracts came from companies upgrading airplanes and avionics systems, the leading subsector, followed by observation and optronics, missiles, rockets, and air defense systems. This contracts allowed for the continued trend of strengthening Israel’s place in the global defense market.
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SIBAT Director, Brig. Gen. (res) Mishel Ben Baruch: “The increase in the volume of new contracts signed expresses a global trend of pulling out of the recession, especially in Europe and North America, and increased defense budgets in the face of growing security challenges. The Israeli defense industries have won great prestige around the world, thanks to advanced quality technology. We are proud to conclude a challenging and successful year for the Israeli defense industry. We succeeded in working together to bring about a significant increase in the volume of defense exports.”
Form of Technology
Aircraft and aerial system improvements (20%); observation and optronics (18%); aerial defense (15%); ammunition and weapons stations (13%); radars and EW (12%); information and intelligence (8%); UAVs (7%); telecommunications (4%); maritime (1%); other (2%).
The exports by countries shows that Asia and the Pacific countries to be the main export target for Israeli companies totaled $2.6 billion in 2016, $300 more than in 2015. Exports also rose to the European market $1,795 billion, North American countries $1,265 billion, Latin American countries $550 million and African countries $275 million ($163 million in 2015) similar to the export for Africa from three years ago.
According to Globes, Ben-Baruch refused to provide details about the structure of the financing plans offered by Israel companies to these countries, or to say whether there was a connection between them and the steep increase in defense exports to Africa in 2016.
8% of 2016 defense exports consisted of cyber systems and intelligence and information systems.