In the fiscal year that ended on September 30, the sales of U.S. military equipment to foreign governments rose by 33 percent to reach $55.6 billion, a U.S. administration official told Reuters on 9 October.
This increase is partially due to the Trump administration motto “Buy American" dating back to April that loosened restrictions namely on foreign military sales. There are two major ways foreign governments purchase arms from U.S. companies: Direct commercial sales, negotiated between a government and a company; and foreign military sales, where a foreign government typically contacts a Department of Defense official at the U.S. embassy in their capital. Both require approval by the U.S. government. The $55.6 billion figure represents signed letters of agreement for foreign military sales between the United States and allies. The largest U.S. arms contractors include Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, General Dynamics and Northrop Grumman.