Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Contract spending

When you think of large amounts of Defense Department money spent on contracts, it’s easy to think in terms of the big-ticket warships being built by Northrop Grumman in New Orleans and Pascagoula. And the aerial tankers the Air Force wants a contractor to build certainly won't be cheap.

But it’s the Army that dominates spending - at least at the midway point of 2008.

The Pentagon’s spending lists at the mid-year point of 2008 shows the Army ranked No. 1 in contract spending, according to an Aerospace Daily analysis of data provided by the National Institute for Computer-Assisted Reporting. The reason: wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The Army's total was about $33 billion, while the Navy's was about $25.2 billion and the Air Force about $16 billion.

The big three defense contractors remained atop the list on the receiving end of the money. Boeing was first with about $9 billion, Lockheed Martin second with $7.4 billion and Northrop Grumman third with $5.4 billion. All three have operations in the Gulf Coast.

And here's an item that shows just how expensive fuel has become. The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company for Distribution came in 12th on the list of contractors with some $918 million, and the Bahrain Petroleum Co. came in 20th with contracts worth about $537 million. (Story)

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