Comparing the power of conventional military forces is quite complicated, which is part of what makes the annual Global Firepower rankings so noteworthy. China, for instance, has only 1 operational aircraft carrier to the US’s 11, but the People’s Liberation Army-Navy is testing its second carrier at sea and has plans to build more. The US is locked in an escalating face-off with top rivals Russia and China. But head-to-head comparisons of military strength are hard to come by.
The 2020 military strength ranking brings the USA in the first place of the list, the Russia second and the China third. The USA is ranked first out of 138 countries holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.0606. The United States retains its top spot as the undisputed military power in the world – both numerically and technologically. Total military personnel of USA is estimated at about 2,260,000 while the airpower total strength rating is 13,264, the highest among the 138 countries of the list.
The Global Firepower utilizes over 50 individual factors to determine a given nation’s Power Index (PwrIndx) score with categories ranging from military might and financials to logistical capability and geography.
The Russian military continues to make strides towards modernization – and in-the-field experience in Syria has helped. Russia is holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.0681. Total military personnel of Russia is estimated at about 3,013,628 while the airpower total strength rating is 4,163, the second-highest among the 138 countries of the list. Russia has 12,950 tanks, a number that brings the country first place at the list regarding land forces.
Chinese military continues to grow alongside a local burgeoning Military-Industrial Complex. For 2020, China is ranked 3 out of 138 countries holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.0691. Total military personnel of Russia is estimated at about 2,693,000 while the airpower total strength rating is 3,210, the third-highest among the 138 countries of the list. Chine has 3,500 tanks, a number that brings the country 7th place at the list regarding land forces.
India comes 4th in the list holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.0953. The mighty Indian military is one of the top five powers in the world – though growing civilian unrest is shifting the focus within. Total military personnel of India is estimated at about 3,544,000 while the airpower total strength rating is 2,123, the 4th highest among the 138 countries of the list. India has 4,292 tanks, a number that brings the country 5th place at the list regarding land forces.
Japan is ranked 5th out of 138 countries holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.1501. The country continues to look to the future and viable solutions to growing regional problems – namely the threat from North Korea. Total military personnel of Japan is estimated at about 303,160 while the airpower total strength rating is 1,561, the 6th highest among the 138 countries of the list. Japan has 1,004 tanks, a number that brings the country 21st place at the list regarding land forces.
For 2020, South Korea is ranked 6th out of 138 countries holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.1509. Under the ever-present threat of its unpredictable northern neighbor, South Korea manages a large and powerful military force.
France takes the 7th place of the list holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.1702. France remains a top-level military power with the internal capability to develop and produce any solution it requires. The next one is the United Kingdom holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.1717. It remains to be seen what BREXIT means for the future of Britain – but its fighting forces remain one of the world’s best.
Egypt takes the 9th place of the list holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.1872. Brazil takes the 10th place holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.1988.
For 2020, Greece is ranked 33 out of 138 countries holding a PwrIndx rating of 0.5311. Growing tensions with neighboring Turkey have placed the Greek military on notice heading into 2020.
At the bottom of the list are Bhutan and Liberia.
Military Strength of Nations, 2020
|14||Iran (Islamic Republic of)||0.2191|
|15||Pakistan (Islamic Republic of)||0.2364|
|45||United Arab Emirates||0.7034|
|71||Democratic Republic of the Congo||1.1389|
|78||Afghanistan (Islamic Republic of)||1.3444|
|121||Republic of the Congo||2.9509|
|124||Mauritania (Islamic Republic of)||3.0477|
|129||Central African Republic||3.2889|
|133||Bosnia and Herzegovina||3.8586|