TSAMTO, March 2. The substantial increase in defense spending of Myanmar, as well as the beginning of democratization of power structures, make this country one of the most promising markets for weapons in the South-East Asia.
According to “Jane’s Defence Weekly”, the Government of Myanmar had allocated for defense in fiscal year 2013-2014 20.8% of the national budget, or about $ 2 billion.
The draft defense budget proposed by the government on February 19, will come into force on April 1. According to experts, the share devoted to the military, reduced compared with appropriations for FY 2012-2013
However, military expenditure for the state budget does not include funds received by the enterprises of the military, which is distributed in accordance with the Law on Special Funds.
Law about Special Funds was adopted in March 2011 and allows the armed forces to use the additional funds without parliamentary oversight.
Financing of special funds, is likely to increase as through proceeds from the exploitation of mineral deposits, primarily natural gas.
Due to the growth of foreign investment in the gas sector, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) predicts an increase in the gross domestic product of Myanmar from 59 billion dollars in 2013 to 77 billion in 2017, with an annual growth rate of about 7% (in Myanmar developed several large gas fields).
Now the government of Myanmar and the Defense challenged to radically modernize the army, air force and navy to ensure adequate defense.
In this regard, Myanmar can be seen in the future as a major customer of various types of weapons, as the country’s armed forces are totally dependent on foreign countries in the supply of military hardware.
At the moment in the arms market Myanmar two countries dominate – China and Russia. Second Division major arms suppliers to the market includes Myanmar North Korea, Serbia and Ukraine.