India is now world's fifth largest military spender

According to figures released by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (Sipri) on Monday, India spent $55.9 billion on its military in 2016.

India's military expenditure grew around 8.5 per cent in 2016, making it the world's fifth largest spender at $55.9 billion,

According to figures released by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (Sipri) on Monday, India spent $55.9 billion on its military in 2016

US remains the world's largest military spender registering a growth of 1.7 per cent between 2015 and 2016 to $611 billion.

Military expenditure by China, which was the second largest spender in 2016, increased by 5.4 per cent to $215 billion, a much lower rate of growth than in previous years.

However, the growth rate was "much lower" than in the previous years, the SIPRI report said.

The third largest military spender was Russia, which has increased its spending by 5.9 per cent to $69.2 billion.

Saudi Arabia was the third largest spender in 2015 but dropped to fourth position in 2016. Spending by Saudi Arabia fell by 30 per cent in 2016 to $63.7 billion, despite its continued involvement in regional wars.

Pakistan does not figure in the top 15 spenders.

"The growth in US military expenditure in 2016 may signal the end of a trend of decreases in spending, which resulted from the economic crisis and the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan and Iraq," the report said.

US spending in 2016 remained 20 per cent lower than its peak in 2010, it added.