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‘Growing global tension’ to drive drone sales, seen doubling by 2025: Research

Sales of drones are set to nearly double over the next decade, due to increased geopolitical instability and the growing use of unmanned technology in military operations, IHS Jane's said on Sunday.

The defense information provider forecasts global sales for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) would jump to more than $11 billion per year by 2025 from $6 billion today.

"Growing global tension and the foreseen increasing role of UAVs in operations will keep demand high," Derrick Maple, principal analyst for unmanned systems at IHS Jane's, said in a report on Sunday.

The Inspire 1 drone, which carries a 4K resolution camera.
ChinaFotoPress | Getty Images
The Inspire 1 drone, which carries a 4K resolution camera.

The U.S. will continue to drive the market through research and development and production sales, but there is growing interest from Asia-Pacific, Europe and the Middle East.

U.S. drone sales are seen reaching $4.26 billion in 2025, in constant 2016 prices, up from $3.36 billion this year.

With conflict or territorial tensions mounting around the world, demand for unmanned aircraft such as drones is set to rise, IHS Jane's found.

Sales in Israel, another major market for drones, are seen reaching $0.41 billion in 2025, up from $0.15 billion in 2016.

IHS Jane's also forecast that sales in China would more than double between now and 2025. Plus, India is increasing its drone budget to more than $3.5 billion over the next 10 years.

"As tension builds in East Asia, so does advancements in UAV programs," Maple said. "Strong growth is expected in India as well, due to its significant border requirements."

Drones will need greater all-weather capability and endurance going forward, IHS Jane's said.

"Integration into non-segregated airspace is becoming critically important globally as operations expand, with rules and regulations needed to address this demand — for military and civil markets alike," Maple added.

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