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South Africa

National Flag: South africa 41e2d0c13b16be8fbd12acd29c9f9cab2b8c0224b5837be26a73ef9b61068109

Sub Region: Southern Africa

Official Armed Forces Name: South African Defence Force


General Information

Category Quantity International Ranking
Geography  
Land Area (km2) 1,221,037.0 22
Population  
Population 54,956,900 25
Labor Force 20,220,000 28
Economy  
GDP Nominal (millions of USD) 280,367 39
GDP PPP (millions of USD) 735,078 30
GDP Nominal Per Capita (USD) 5,102 63
GDP PPP Per Capita (USD) 13,376 64
Financial Reserves (millions of USD) 44,600 37
Military Personnel  
Active Personnel 67,000 50
Paramilitary Personnel 67,000 44
Military Reservists 15,050 64
Military Spending  
Nominal Military Spending (millions of USD) 3,090 49
PPP Military Spending (millions of USD) 8,101 44
Nominal Military Spending Per Active Soldier (USD) 46,119 47
PPP Military Spending Per Active Soldier (USD) 120,918 39
Infrastructure  
Roadway Length (km) 747,014 10
Railway Length (km) 20,192 14
Number of Airports 566 10
Human Development Index (HDI) 0.666 70
Oil  
Oil Production (bbl/day) 3,000 71
Oil Consumption (bbl/day) 612,000 31
Proven Oil Reserves (bbl) 15,000,000 72
Merchant Marine  
Merchant Marine Ship Quantity 3 68
Nuclear Warheads  
Nuclear Warhead Quantity 0 10
Calculated Military Scores  
Combined Force Projection 676 56
Land Power 2,084 59
Air Power 1,881 61
Sea Power 2,009 46
Transport Power 1,772 81
Total War Potential 1,160 52

Force Branches

Land Forces  
Air Defense Forces South African Air Defense Forces
Airborne Force 44 Parachute Regiment (South Africa)
Land Based Missile Force South African Land Based Missile Force
Main Army South African Army
Special Forces South African Special Forces
Air Forces  
Main Air Force South African Air Force
Sea Forces  
Coast Guard South African Coast Guard
Ice Breaker Fleet South African Ice Breaker Fleet
Main Navy South African Navy

Military Assets

Category Quantity International Ranking
Total Main Battle Tanks 157 57
4th Generation Main Battle Tanks 0 2
3rd Generation Main Battle Tanks 24 47
2nd Generation Main Battle Tanks 133 34
1st Generation Main Battle Tanks 0 40
Light Tanks 0 33
Armoured Reconnaissance Vehicles 176 33
Armoured Infantry Fighting Vehicles 534 22
Armoured Personnel Carriers 0 101
Self-propelled Howitzers 43 41
Self-propelled Multiple Rocket Launchers 51 37
Self-propelled Mortar Carriers 0 27
Anti-tank Missile Carriers 0 30
Self-propelled Anti-tank Guns 0 8
Self-propelled Anti-ballistic Missile SAM Launchers 0 2
Self-propelled Long Range SAM Launchers (Limited ABM) 0 11
Self-propelled Medium Range SAM Launchers 0 9
Self-propelled Short Range SAM Launchers 0 40
Self-propelled Anti-aircraft Guns 36 22
Self-propelled Gun/SAM Hybrid Systems 0 13
Towed Howitzers 6 86
Towed Multiple Rocket Launchers 0 10
Towed Mortars 1,226 18
Recoilless Guns 0 33
Towed Anti-tank Guns 0 17
Towed Anti-ballistic Missile SAM Launchers 0 3
Towed Long Range SAM Launchers (Limited ABM) 0 17
Towed Medium Range SAM Launchers 0 22
Towed Short Range SAM Launchers 0 10
Towed Anti-aircraft Guns 40 42
Towed Anti-aircraft Gun/SAM Hybrid Systems 0 1
Mobile Ballistic Missile Launchers 0 20
Silo Based Missiles 0 7
Total Aircraft 205 49
Total Fighter Aircraft 26 54
5th Generation Fighter Aircraft 0 7
4th Generation Fighter Aircraft 26 44
3rd Generation Fighter Aircraft 0 40
1st and 2nd Generation Fighter Aircraft 0 21
Ground Attack Aircraft 0 26
Strategic Bombers 0 5
Anti-submarine and Maritime Patrol Aircraft 0 23
Heavy Transport/Tanker Aircraft 0 18
Medium Transport/Tanker Aircraft 7 28
Light Transport/Tanker Aircraft 21 28
Early Warning Aircraft 0 14
Military Passenger Aircraft 6 23
Trainer Aircraft 59 33
Total Helicopters 86 39
Attack Helicopters 11 34
Non-Attack Helicopters 75 41
Combat Support Aircraft 0 30
Total Navy Displacement (metric tons) 22,190 49
Total Ships 18 51
Aircraft Carriers 0 5
Battleship/Battlecruisers 0 2
Cruisers 0 4
Destroyers 0 12
Frigates 4 14
Corvettes 0 16
Amphibious Assault Ships (LHD/LHAs) 0 5
Landing Platform/Dock (LPDs) 0 7
Landing Ship/Dock (LSDs) 0 5
Tank Landing Ships (LST/LSMs) 0 11
Landing Crafts 6 30
Mine Warfare Ships 2 21
Patrol Ships 6 46
Total Submarines 3 17
Ballistic Missile Submarines 0 6
Nuclear Attack Submarines 0 7
Conventional Attack Submarines 3 12
Coastal and Midget Submarines 0 5

Satellites

Category Quantity International Ranking
Communications 0 9
Navigation/Positioning/Time 0 5
Meteorology/Oceanography 0 2
Intelligence/Surveillance/Reconnaissance 0 8
Electronic Intelligence/Signal Intelligence 0 4
Space Surveillance 0 3
Early Warning 0 3

Coast Guard Assets

Category Quantity International Ranking
Large Patrol Ships 1 11
Medium Patrol Ships 0 15
Small Patrol Ships 4 43
Fixed Wing Aircraft 0 13
Helicopters 0 14

Ice Breakers

Category Quantity International Ranking
Quantity 1 7


Database sources: The Military Balance 2017, wikipedia.com, CIA World Factbook, as well as other online sources.