New record for German arms exports

Germany’s arms exports rise to 7.5 billion euros

German Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel promised more restrictive export licensing, particularly of light arms. But DW’s Naomi Conrad reports on a record volume of sales.

The figures, German Vice Chancellor and Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel told journalists in Berlin on Friday, were characterized by “light and darkness.”

He was referring to Germany’s arms sales in 2015, which amounted to a total of 7.5 billion euros, up by almost 50 percent compared with 2014.

Germany is one of the world’s top four arms exporters, but Gabriel, who heads the Social Democratic Party (SPD), has vowed to make arms export policy more restrictive, especially with regard to the Middle East.

In the past, Gabriel said, exporting rules had been watered down, with too much weight given to the interest of the arms industry.

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