Report: Bangladesh's defence imports projected to increase by 2022

Bangladeshi defence imports are expected to increase by 2022, according to a report by Strategic Defence Intelligence (SDI).

Titled ‘Future of the Bangladesh Defense Industry – Market Attractiveness, Competitive Landscape and Forecasts to 2022’, the report provides an overview of the Bangladeshi defence industry.

Bangladesh has only two state-controlled defence equipment manufacturing units, which means that it fails to meet its military requirements. Bangladesh’s 2017 $3.3bn defence budget is small compared to other countries.

The country is heavily dependent on other countries to fulfil its military needs and extensive military update programmes since 2014 have led to an increase in arms imports.

"Extensive military update programmes since 2014 have led to an increase in arms imports."

Bangladesh imports military hardware mainly from China as the two countries share strong diplomatic relations. Imports from China are expected to remain at the same level during the forecast period.

Russia is the second biggest exporter to Bangladesh and has received orders for five Mil Mi-171Sh helicopters this year. The procurement order is part of an upgrade programme launched by the government for the Bangladesh Air Force.

Bangladesh is projected to allocate $778.1m towards the acquisition of military hardware systems and, as a result, investment in the procurement of advanced defence systems is expected to be limited during the forecast period.

Corruption within the defence procurement process is expected to further restrict the domestic defence industry growth.