HomeContact Site map   Google    www    iipm think tank
   
   
Home Scrutiny Publications Under Cover Mus'ings  
 

Home > Undercover > More is less

  
   
     
   Case Studies  
       
  Marketing    
  Human Resource    
  Information Technology    
  Finance    
  Strategy    
       
 
     
   Industries  
       
  Steel    
  Glass    
  Banking    
  Prophylactic    
  Auto    
  Hospitality    
  Energy    
       
 
     
   Other links  
       
  IIPM    
  Planman Consulting    
  Planman Marcom    
  Planman Technologies    
  Planman Media    
  Planman Financial    
  4P's Business and Marketing    
  Business and Economy    
  The Daily Indian    
  The Sunday Indian    
  Arindam Chaudhuri    
  GIDF    
       
 
  
         
Undercover
  
LOBBYING : GLOBAL ARMS TRADE
More is less
Arms trade causes multifaceted economic loss to any nation
10/10/2010



The whole business of arms trade is no more a scoop. Names like Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems, General Dynamics, Dassault Aviation, Finmeccanica, Boeing, Rosoboronexport and Northrop Grumman feature prominently in the list of arms traders. Going by the conservative estimations, the global arms trade market is worth over $50 billion annually, out of which the US controls around 40 per cent. However, given the recent economic meltdown, the arms sale saw a fall of 8.5 per cent and the US share dropped to $22.6 billion. But then, it was not tough for these countries and companies to find clients, in spite of the global economic problems. Most of the arms are pushed to those countries who top the chart when it comes to poverty and political instability. Even a country like Iraq, which is still trying to stand up, has announced its plans to purchase arms worth $13 billion from the US; juxtapose this with the country’s GDP of $84.7 billion (2008).

What may be interesting is the way these companies pushed the arms to conflict zones and especially to the US allies through lobbying with the US government. But what is more interesting is the way these companies use their profits. As per the lobbying disclosure report released in 2009, Northrop Grumman (in 2008) doubled its lobbying budget to $20.6 million; Boeing increased it to $16.6 million (up from $10 million) and Lockheed-Martin (the front runner when it comes to contracts from the Pentagon) hiked its lobbying budget by a monstrous 54 per cent. So much so that the excessive lobbying made the US government ignore the whole idea of closing F-22 production, which, as per defence experts, will be of no use to the US in any possible war in future. Moreover, the government was actually worried about those 95,000 employees, working in the plant after the closure – especially at a time where Obama’s government is leaving no stone unturned to improve the employment statistics.



The plants are so strategically located that in case of plans by the government to close down production facilities, these companies can urge the local Congress member to resist and defend. On the same lines, Northrop Grumman took the help of 383 congressional districts to save its B-2 Stealth bomber plant. Most of these companies blackmail the government in the name of job loss and local unemployment that would eventually effect the US economy. On the contrary, various studies show that increase in the military expenditure has an inverse effect not only on the economy but also on employment. These companies are trying to keep their production facilities running at the cost of development in Third World countries. Firstly, these companies push inferior products to conflict zones and poor countries. Secondly, they use profits for lobbying with client countries. Thirdly, they lobby even with domestic governments so that they can keep their plants running. In spite of efforts by several NGOs, the UN arms trade treaty has still not been enforced. Arms trade not only dents the economy of the host country but fuel the conflicts across the world. In 2012, during the UN conference on arm trade, one hopes that the US would back the treaty, if not for the world, then at least for its own economy. After all, unaccountable global arms trade can only endanger the whole globe.

By:- Sray Agarwal

Back

  
 
 
       
Home | Scrutiny | Publications | About us | Contact us
Copyright @2010 iipm think tank. All rights reserved.