Federal Foreign Office supporting modernization of UN database on military expenditures with 75,000 euros

In 2012, the Federal Foreign Office is supporting the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) with a total of 75,000 euros as it modernizes the UN reporting system on military expenditures. The new system will help provide a more transparent overview of global military spending.

Large sums are spent worldwide on equipment for the military every year, yet not all states are happy to disclose the amounts involved. In recent years, the number of states providing information for the UN Report on Military Expenditures has continued to fall. To counter this negative trend, the United Nations General Assembly adopted, at Germany’s initiative, a reform of the reporting system on military expenditures in 2011. The groundwork was done in 2011 by a UN Group of Governmental Experts chaired by Germany.

One of the agreed improvements is the thorough updating of the database which forms the basis for the UN reporting system. German funds are to be used to set up a user-friendly, functional web application allowing immediate access to all data. A search function opens the way for research according to country, region, year, troop structure or resource category. An online report module is to further improve the system.

Long-standing German commitment to transparency on military expenditures

Transparency in the field of military spending makes an important contribution to disarmament, international peace and security, creates increased trust between states and can avoid misunderstandings or even conflicts. Therefore, Germany has been working for many years on UN reporting on military expenditures and traditionally presents resolutions in the UN General Assembly together with Romania. In spring 2012, the Foreign Ministers of Germany and Romania sent a joint letter to various regional organizations and to the states who are either not reporting or not reporting regularly. The aim was to draw their attention to the reform of the UN instrument and encourage them to participate in reporting.

More information on the UN reporting system on military expenditures

Last updated 06.07.2012

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