Global arms transfer agreements between governments – both developing and developed – nearly doubled last year to $85.3 billion, reaching their highest level since 2004.
The U.S. dominated as a supplier, making $66.3 billion from transactions with other nations – a record high representing nearly 78% of all weapons sales, according to a report from the Congressional Research Service.
The haul is more than triple the $21.4 billion the U.S. made from arms agreements in 2010.
Russia was the second-most-prolific player on the arms scene, making $4.8 billion in sales in 2011, or 5.6% of the total. Since 2008, Russia and the U.S. have flip-flopped between the two top supplier positions.
Saudi Arabia bought the most arms of any country. It spent $33.7 billion on weapons, with 99% of that amount going to the U.S. India was next with a $6.9-billion arms bill, followed by the $4.5 billion spent by the United Arab Emirates.