After decades of funding problems, several Latin American governments are beginning to re-arm their militaries. According to Forecast International’s “The Military Market for Latin America” report, the regional defense market is becoming increasingly active, pressured by the urgent need to modernize and replace obsolete platforms and supported by continued economic growth and improved saving mechanisms.
“Overall spending figures are expected to increase over the period 2015-2019 by a compound annual growth rate of 4.9 percent, with regional totals increasing from $80.525 billion [USD] to $102.246 billion [USD],” said Rebecca Barrett Edwards, Forecast International Latin America and Caribbean analyst.
Given the insurgency and counter-narcotics concerns in the region, many Latin American countries are primarily interested in counterinsurgency and surveillance equipment. Also topping the list of priorities is paramilitary equipment such as small arms, helicopters, patrol boats, armoured vehicles, trucks, and communications equipment, rather than larger systems intended primarily for conventional conflict, such as fighter aircraft, tanks, or large naval vessels. Interdiction equipment is especially important in countries where there has been a marked rise in the level of drug-related activity. (Source: MPI – Hawk Information)