The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute said Monday that more weapons were delivered between 2012 and 2016 than any other five-year period since 1990.
The United States remains the top weapons exporter with a 33 percent market share, ahead of Russia, China, France and Germany.
These five countries account for almost 75 percent of the global export of heavy weapons.
The United States and France are the main weapons providers for the Middle East, while Russia and China are the main exporters to Asia.
Saudi Arabia was the second-largest importer of weapons in the world, behind India, which unlike China, does not have production at the national level yet.