Who Are The Big Air-and-Missile Defence System Spenders in Europe?

 In Perspectives

It’s no surprise that air-and-missile defense (AMD) spending has been on the rise in Europe since 2014. Fears over Russia’s aggressive posturing in the region and the ongoing conflict in Syria have put pressure on European countries to modernize their militaries and shore up their defenses.

The chart below looks at air defense spending in Europe since 2014 and the likely trend ten years out according to our Global Platforms and Systems (GPS) database.

Over the ten-year period, Poland, Turkey, Romania, and Sweden are expected to spend the most on AMD systems, representing 80% of all AMD spending in Europe.

Poland, Romania, and Sweden are all acquiring (or in Poland’s case, likely acquiring) Patriot Air-and-Missile Defense systems, while Turkey recently signed a contract to acquire the Russian S-400.

Use the filters on the top of the chart to compare AMD spending by region and country.

Poland, Sweden, Romania, and Turkey represent the biggest AMD spenders in Europe.

Click on the drop-down to highlight AMD systems by country. The graph below includes both major AMD procurement and additional AMD systems acquired by that country.

Note: This data story is only focusing on the AMD systems being procured and excludes the purchase of missiles for each system.


Poland is looking to acquire a medium range air-and-missile defense system under its Wisla program, which first began in 2014. While Poland has not officially signed a contract, the Ministry of National Defence has been in negotiations with the US regarding the acquisition of Raytheon’s Patriot Air-and-Missile Defense System.

Poland is looking to acquire eight systems in a deal estimated to be worth $7.8 billion, although the DSCA has now priced the acquisition as high as $10.5 billion for four systems as of November 2017.

Compared to other Patriot acquisitions, the significantly higher price tag is largely due to Polish demands for an Integrated Battle Command System (IBCS) incorporated into the systems, and Polish technology transfer requirements that need 50% of the work to be conducted domestically.

The Polish defense minister has publicly stated that negotiations are ongoing to reduce the cost of the acquisition, but Poland will likely have to pay a higher price regardless for these upgraded systems.


While Sweden is a neutral country and will likely remain so in the future, concerns about Russian aggression in the region have prompted Swedish officials to rethink the country’s military readiness.

Swedish investment in air defense has been a low priority for the last couple decades. But, following the annexation of Crimea, Sweden‘s 2016-2020 Defence Policy called for the need to upgrade air defense capabilities and acquire a medium-range air defense system, amongst other modernization programs.

In November 2017, Sweden decided to move forward with the acquisition of the Patriot Air-and-Missile Defense System in a deal estimated to be worth $1.2 billion.

Raytheon’s air-and-missile defense system was chosen over Eurosam’s SAMP/T despite the lower price tag revealed by indigenous sources shortly after the acquisition was made public.


Shortly after the DSCA approved the sale of seven Patriot Air-and-Missile Defense Systems in July 2017, Romania signed a letter of offer and acceptance at the end of November in a deal worth $3.9 billion.

In addition to the procurement of seven systems, the deal also includes 56 Patriot MIM-104E Guidance Enhanced Missile TBM (GEM-T) and 168 Patriot Advanced Capability-3 Missile Segment Enhancement missiles.

The DSCA announcement states that the purchase of Patriot systems will help Romania “strengthen its homeland defense and deter regional threats. The proposed sale will increase the defensive capabilities of the Romanian military to guard against aggression and shield the NATO allies who often train and operate within Romania’s borders.”


Turkey has decided to move forward with the acquisition of the Russian-made S-400 systems for $2.5 billion, much to the dismay of the country’s NATO allies. While Turkish officials claim that the purchase of the systems is not a political statement targeted towards NATO, the purchase clearly signifies a stronger relationship with Russia.

Turkey previously housed Patriot systems on loan from NATO allies to help defend from potential threats emanating from Syria, and considered acquiring the Patriot system to fulfill its AMD requirements. NATO’s concern over the purchase has to do with the interoperability of the systems, since the Russian-made platform cannot be connected to NATO architecture.

Under the deal, Turkey will provide 45% of the funding for the S-400 upfront while taking out a loan from Russia to fund the remaining 55% of the deal. The anticipated delivery date of the S-400 batteries is 2020.


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