Comparing the military power of different states is a difficult but interesting problem. Despite all the difficulties associated with assessing the power of the armed forces of a given state, attempts are constantly being made to rank the most militarily strong states. Due to constant tensions or open collisions that are constantly observed in different parts of the world, such ratings are in demand and attract the attention of the general public.
10 in July, the American edition of Business Insider published a material called The 35 Most Powerful Militaries In The World ("35 of the most powerful armies in the world"). As is clear from the title, the authors of the article tried to compare the armed forces of the leading countries and find out which state has the most powerful army. For convenience, the list was limited to only 35 positions, which is why the vast majority of countries in the world could not get into it.
According to Business Insider, the top ten most powerful militarily states are as follows: USA, Russia, PRC, India, Great Britain, France, Germany, Turkey, South Korea, and Japan. Remembering the latest events, it is necessary to note the position in the ranking of several other states. So, Israel could not enter the top ten and stopped at the 11-th place, Ukraine took the 21-th place, and right behind it in the ranking is Iran. The Syrian armed forces secured their country 26-place in the world ranking. The last line in the list from Business Insider is the DPRK.
It should be noted that the authors of The 35 Most Powerful Militaries In The World did not independently conduct research of the armed forces of the world, but used the existing database. As a basis for their work, they took the well-known Global Firepower Index (GFP) rating. This rating is considered one of the most famous and reputable in the world. The purpose of the GFP database is to collect information about the armed forces of the world, its analysis and summing up. The latest ranking of the world's armies was published in April of this year and contains information about the armed forces of 106 states. In the future, the number of countries counted in the rating will increase.
To compare the military power of states, the authors of the Global Firepower Index use a complex assessment methodology that takes into account more than 50 of various factors. According to the results of calculations, the army receives an estimate (Power index or PwrIndex), approximately reflecting its capabilities. At the same time, a system of bonus and penalty points is used for greater objectivity of ratings. In addition, objectivity is designed to provide several additional conditions:
- the assessment does not take into account nuclear weapon;
- the assessment takes into account the geographical features of the state;
- the assessment takes into account not only the number of weapons and equipment;
- the assessment takes into account the production and consumption of certain resources;
- States that do not have access to the sea, do not receive penalty points for the absence of the Navy;
- for limited military capabilities fleet a fine is imposed;
- The assessment does not take into account the peculiarities of the political and military leadership of the country.
The result of the calculation becomes a decimal with four decimal places. Ideally, the state index should be equal to 0,0000, but the achievement of such high rates in reality is impossible. For example, the leader of the last rating, the United States, has a rating of 0,2208, and Japan closes the top ten with PwrIndex 0,5586. Beginning with 25 place (Saudi Arabia), state ratings exceed one. Moreover, Tanzania, located on the last 106-th place in the ranking, has a rating of 4,3423.
Of course, the GFP rating has certain problems, but it still allows you to create a relatively objective picture that takes into account many different factors. Referring to the Global Firepower Index database and consider what allowed countries to take the first 5 places in the ranking.
The authors of the rating note that in recent years the United States has found itself in a difficult position. Two costly wars and difficulties with new projects, as well as cuts in the military budget, led to the Pentagon facing many difficulties. Nevertheless, even in such conditions, the US armed forces retained their first place in the GFP ranking, receiving an 0,2208 rating.
The total population of the United States is 316,668 million. The total number of human resources suitable for service - 142,2 million people. 120 million people aged 17-45 years, if necessary, can be drafted into the army. Each year, the number of potential recruits is replenished 4,2 millions of people. Currently, 1,43 million people serve in the US military, and the reserve is 850 thousand people.
Ground forces units have a large number of equipment of various classes and types. A total of 8325 are used in the USA tanks, 25782 armored personnel carriers, infantry fighting vehicles, etc., 1934 self-propelled artillery mounts, 1791 towed guns and 1330 multiple launch rocket systems.
The total number of aircraft in the Air Force, aviation The Navy and KMP - 13683. These are 2271 fighters, 2601 attack aircraft, 5222 military transport aircraft, 2745 training aircraft, as well as 6012 multi-purpose and 914 attack helicopters.
In the Navy and other US structures, more than 470 ships, submarines, boats and auxiliary vessels are currently in operation. 10 aircraft carriers, 15 frigates, 62 destroyers, 72 submarines, 13 coast guard ships and 13 minesweepers.
Despite the emergence of new weapons and equipment, the US armed forces still need oil and petroleum products. The petroleum industry in the United States is currently producing 8,5 million barrels per day. Daily consumption is 19 million. Proved US reserves are 20,6 billions of barrels.
The GFP ranking also takes into account the production and logistics capabilities of countries. The total size of the US labor force is 155 million. The country has 393 merchant ships (run under the American flag), which can use the 24 major port. The total length of roads - 6,58 million miles, iron - 227,8 thousand miles. 13,5 thousand airports and airfields are operated.
An important element of the rating is the financial component of the armed forces. US military budget - 612,5 billion. At the same time, the country's foreign debt is equal to 15,9 trillions of dollars. The country's foreign exchange reserves - 150,2 billion dollars, purchasing power parity - 15,9 trillion.
To predict the country's capabilities in a defensive war, the Global Firepower Index ranking takes into account the geographical features of countries. The total area of the United States - 9,8 million square meters. km The coastline is 19,9 thousand km, the borders with neighboring states are 12 thousand km. Waterways - 41 thousand km.
The second place in the April GFP ranking was taken by Russia with an 0,2355 rating. The authors of the rating believe that the growth of military potential shown in 2013 should be a good start for the future.
The total population of Russia is 145,5 million people, 69,1 million of which can serve. Each year, the draft age reaches 1,35 million people. Currently, 766 thousand people are serving in the military, and the reserve of the armed forces is 2,48 million.
Russia has one of the largest armored vehicle parks. Its armed forces have 15,5 thousand tanks, 27607 armored personnel carriers, infantry fighting vehicles and similar vehicles, 5990 SAU, 4625 towed guns and 3871 MLRS.
The total number of aircraft in the armed forces is 3082 units. Of these, 736 fighters, 1289 strike aircraft, 730 military transport, 303 training aircraft, as well as 973 multi-purpose and 114 attack helicopters.
The Navy and the Border Guard Service use more than 350 ships, boats and auxiliary vessels. These are one aircraft carrier, four frigates, 13 destroyers, 74 corvette, 63 submarines and 65 coast guard ships. Mine-sweeping forces are represented by 34 ships.
According to the authors of the GFP ranking, Russia extracts 11 million barrels of oil daily. Own consumption does not exceed 2,2 million barrels per day. Proven reserves - 80 billion barrels.
Russia's “hands of work” are estimated at 75,68 million people. There are 1143 sea and river merchant ships. The main logistic burden falls on seven major ports and terminals. The country has 982 thousand km of roads and 87,1 thousand km of railways. Air transport can use 1218 airfields.
The Russian military budget is 76,6 billion dollars. The country's external debt - 631,8 billion. Gold reserves are estimated at 537,6 billion dollars. Purchasing power parity - 2,486 trillion dollars.
Russia is the largest state in the world and has an area of more than 17 million square meters. km The coastline of the country has a length of 37653 km, land borders - 20241 km. The total length of waterways reaches 102 thousand km.
The top three leaders of the April Global Firepower Index ranking closes China, which received an 0,2594 rating. This country increases defense spending, which allows it to increase its presence in the Asia-Pacific region, as well as move up the GFP ranking.
The PRC is the world's largest state in terms of population: 1,35 billion people live in the territory of this country. If necessary, 749,6 million people can be recruited into the ranks of the armed forces. Annually, the draft age reaches 19,5 million people. Currently, the People’s Liberation Army of China (PLA) is served by 2,28 million people, and 2,3 million are reservists.
The PLA has 9150 tanks of various classes and types, 4788 armored vehicles for infantry, 1710 self-propelled and 6246 towed guns. In addition, ground forces have 1770 multiple rocket launchers.
The total number of aircraft in the Air Force and Naval Aviation is 2788. Of these, 1170 - fighters, 885 - strike aircraft. Transport tasks are performed by 762 aircraft, 380 aircraft are used to train pilots. In addition, the PLA has 865 multipurpose helicopters and 122 drums.
China's fleet has 520 ships, boats and ships. This number includes one aircraft carrier, 45 frigates, 24 destroyers, 9 corvettes, 69 submarines, 353 ships and coast guard boats, as well as 119 mine-sweeping ships.
China produces 4,075 million barrels of oil daily, which is less than half of its own consumption (9,5 million barrels per day). Proved oil reserves - 25,58 billion barrels.
China's labor force is estimated at 798,5 million. The country operates 2030 merchant ships. 15 ports and terminals are of strategic importance. The total length of roads exceeds 3,86 million kilometers, and there are 86 thousand km of railways. Aviation can use 507 airfields.
According to GFP, China’s defense budget last year reached 126 billion dollars. At the same time, the country's external debt approached 729 billion dollars. Gold reserves of the country reach 3,34 trillion dollars. Purchasing power parity - 12,26 trillion dollars.
The area of China is slightly less than 9,6 million square meters. kilometers The coastline has a length of 14,5 thousand km, the land border - 22117 km. There are waterways with a total length of 110 thousand km.
India received an 0,3872 rating and ranks fourth in the GFP ranking with it. This state has already become the largest importer of weapons and military equipment, and, apparently, will continue military-technical cooperation with foreign partners in the future.
As the world's second largest state in terms of population (1,22 billion people), India can, if necessary, enlist in the army up to 615,2 million people. Every year, the available human resources are replenished with 22,9 million people reaching military age. Currently, 1,325 million people are serving in the Indian armed forces, and 2,143 million are still in reserve.
The ground forces of India have 3569 tanks, 5085 armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles, 290 SAU and 6445 towed artillery. Rocket artillery is represented by 292 volley fire systems.
The Indian Air Force has 1785 aircraft of all classes and types. The aircraft fleet has the following structure: 535 fighter jets, 468 percussion vehicles, 706 military transport and 237 training vehicles. Transport and support tasks perform 504 multi-purpose helicopter. The destruction of the equipment and forces of the enemy is assigned to 20 attack helicopters.
Indian naval forces are relatively few, they have only 184 ship. This includes 2 aircraft carrier, 15 frigates, 11 destroyers, 24 corvette, 17 submarines, 32 ships and coast guard boats, and 7 minesweepers.
India has relatively small oil fields, but the country remains dependent on foreign supplies. Proved reserves - 5,476 billion barrels. Daily Indian industry produces 897,5 thousand barrels of oil, and daily consumption reaches 3,2 million barrels.
Indian labor is estimated at 482,3 million. Under the Indian flag goes 340 merchant ships. There are 7 major ports in the country. The total duration of roads exceeds 3,32 million km. For railways, this parameter does not exceed 64 thousand km. Operate 346 airfields.
This year, India has allocated 46 billions of dollars for defense. The external debt of the state is close to 379 billions. The country's foreign exchange reserves are estimated at 297,8 billion dollars, and purchasing power parity at 4,71 trillion dollars.
The area of India is 3,287 million square meters. km The country has land borders with a total length of 14103 km and a coastline of length 7 thousand km. The length of the waterways of the country - 14,5 thousand km.
5. United Kingdom
The top five in the GFP rankings drawn up in April of this year is the UK, which received an 0,3923 rating. This country intends in the near future to pay special attention to its armed forces and is therefore engaged in the implementation of several new projects.
From 63,4 million citizens of Great Britain only 29,1 million people can get into the army. The number of potential servicemen is annually replenished with 749 by thousands of people. Currently 205,3 thousand people serve in the armed forces. Reserve - 182 thousands.
The British Army has 407 tanks, 6245 armored vehicles for the transport of infantry, 89 self-propelled artillery, 138 towed guns and 56 MLRS.
The Royal Air Force has 908 aircraft. These are mainly airplanes: 84 fighter, 178 percussion, 338 military transport and 312 training aircraft. In addition, the troops have 362 multipurpose and 66 attack helicopters.
Formerly, Great Britain had one of the most powerful fleets in the world, but over the past decades it has lost its sea power. Currently, there are only 66 ships and vessels in the British Naval Service. These are 1 aircraft carriers, 13 frigates, 6 destroyers, 11 submarines, 24 coast guard vessels and 15 minesweepers.
With the help of platforms in the North Sea, the UK produces daily 1,1 million barrels of oil. However, production does not cover the country's own consumption, which reaches 1,7 million barrels per day. The country's proven reserves are at the level of 3,12 billion barrels.
About 32 million people are employed in industry and the UK economy. The country's merchant fleet uses the 504 vessel and the 14 major ports. On the territory of the state there are 394,4 thousand km of automobile roads and 16,45 thousand thousand km of railways. 460 airfields and airports are in operation.
The size of the military budget of the UK reaches 56,6 billion dollars, external debt - 10,09 trillions of dollars. Gold reserves are estimated at 105,1 billion dollars. Purchasing power parity - 2,313 trillion dollars.
The area of the island state is 243,6 thousand square meters. km The coastline is 12429 km. On land, the UK is bordered only by Ireland. The length of this boundary does not exceed 390 km. The total length of waterways is 3200 km.
As we see, the states occupying the first lines in the Global Firepower Index ranking have several common features. These countries pay great attention to their armed forces, including from a financial point of view. The findings of the authors of the GFP rating are confirmed by other sources. For example, according to the Stockholm Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), over the past few years, India (4 place in the GFP ranking), increasing the cost of purchasing weapons and military equipment, literally soared up the list of importing countries and took first place. The silver medalist of the GFP rating, Russia, is currently implementing the State Armaments Program, according to which, before 2020, a little less than 20 trillions of rubles will be spent on the purchase of weapons and equipment.
The purchase of equipment and weapons can be considered one of the main factors that allow countries to keep in the upper part of the considered rating. However, investments in new equipment alone cannot raise the country to the top of the list. In addition to procurement, good management is required, the correct work of various structures of the armed forces, etc. When calculating the PwrIndex index, fifty factors are taken into account, each of which can affect the place of a particular country in the list. Nevertheless, there is some relationship between the quantity and quality of equipment and the country's position in the ranking. To see it, you need to again refer to the table compiled by journalists of the publication Business Insider.
The authors of the publication The 35 Most Powerful Militaries In The World not only provided information in a convenient way, but also noted leaders in certain “areas”. So, the world leader in the size of the military budget is unconditionally the USA with defense expenditures in the amount of 612,5 billion dollars. The same country belongs to the leadership in the field of aviation (13683 aircraft) and aircraft carrier fleet (10 aircraft carriers). As a result, the United States is in the first place ranking.
Russia ranked second and also leads in some indicators. In service with the Russian army there are 15 thousands of tanks - more than anyone else. In addition, Busines Insider journalists took on such courage and supplemented the GFP rating data with information on countries' nuclear arsenals. According to their calculations, Russia has 8484 nuclear ammunition of various classes and types.
The top three are China's leading man in the field of human resources. Theoretically, 749,6 million people could be called up to the Chinese army. In addition, it is necessary to note the growing military budget of China, which, according to Business Insider, is second only to the US and has already reached 126 billion dollars.
An interesting fact is that in the table from the article “35 of the strongest armies in the world”, the leadership in one of the points was left for a small and not too militarily powerful country. The DPRK occupies the 35 line in the GFP ranking and its updated version from Business Insider. Despite such a low position, the North Korean Navy is the world leader in the submarine fleet: according to available data, they have 78 submarines of various types. However, global leadership in such a field did not help North Korea rise above the 35 spot.
The Global Firepower Index rating, despite the fact that it was published several months ago, is still of some interest. Due to the complexity of the assessment methodology, which takes into account a large number of various factors, this rating can be considered sufficiently objective and shows an approximate picture of the real situation in the military field. In addition, it should be noted that he can please the Russian reader, since our country has taken one of the first places in it and has bypassed almost all other countries counted in the rating. The publication in the Business Insider publication, in turn, reminds of the GFP ranking and makes it possible to feel pride in the Russian armed forces again.
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