The federal government approved arms exports for at least 8.35 billion euros this year. This is already the second highest value in the history of the Federal Republic.

Only last year was the number even higher at 9.35 billion euros. More than a quarter of the weapons and military equipment delivered from January 1 to December 22 went to Russia-invaded Ukraine. This emerges from a response from the Federal Ministry of Economics to a request from the left-wing member of the Bundestag Sevim Dagdelen. The letter is available from the German Press Agency.

In the coalition negotiations, at the urging of the SPD and the Greens, the traffic light government had actually planned to reduce arms exports. Then came the U-turn with the Ukraine war. The self-imposed ban on arms deliveries to war zones was quashed by Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) in his “Zeitenwende” speech on February 27 – a break with principles that have been in place for decades.

Since then, armaments supplies worth 2.24 billion euros have been approved for Ukraine. However, the high overall value of export licenses is not solely due to this. Even without Ukraine, exports worth more than six billion euros were approved. For comparison: in the 16 years of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s (CDU) government, the 6 billion mark was exceeded only five times.

The left-wing politician Dagdelen sharply criticized the high total value: “The cabinet of the SPD, FDP and Greens is responsible for the second-highest exports of weapons and war equipment of all time. Instead of restricting arms exports as promised, the traffic light unscrupulously delivers arms to war and crisis zones and benefits from conflicts and deaths.”