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African Military

10 African Countries With the Highest Military Strength and Fire Power


The Global Fire Power ranks countries of the world every year according to their military strength and fire power. In their ranking of African Countries With the Highest Military Strength and Fire Power, up to 40 different ranking tools and parameters like number of active front-line and reserve personnel, number of tanks and armoured fighting vehicle, aircrafts like fighters/ interceptors and helicopters, naval strength and coastal defence crafts, resources and defence budget, logistics and many other factors are used and in such an approach that a smaller country with good military intelligence competes favourably well with a highly populated country with lots of great foot soldiers while landlocked countries are not penalized for lack of an active navy. It is important to note that the military strength of a country is not only determined by the size of her ammunition. We bring you the list of 10 best countries in Africa with the highest military strength and fire power.

African Countries With Best Military Strength and Fire Power

1. EGYPT

Flag of Egypt - African Countries With the Highest Military Strength

Egypt is a country in the north of Africa with a staggering population of 94 million people and has faced major political crises in the recent past but this has not changed its position as a leading African country when it comes to military strength. A significant percentage of Egypt’s population (over 35 million) are fit for active military service and more than 1.5 million individuals reach the military age every year. With almost 5000 tanks including armoured fighting vehicles, self propelled guns and towed artillery, Egypt is a force to reckon with when it comes to Africa. Having a total of 1,100 aircraft including 245 helicopters, 343 fighters, 390 trainer aircraft and 28 mine warfare, 84 serviceable air ports and a budget of over $4bn pumped into Egypt’s defence every 365 days make Egyptian military the strongest among other countries in Africa.

2. ALGERIA

Flag of Algeria

Algeria is a country consisting of 48 provinces and 1541 communes. It is the 33rd most populated country on earth with a population of 39.21 million. More than 20 million people make up the manpower and over 17 million citizens are within the active service year. Algerian military is made up of modern army, navy and air force. The country is largely financed by oil and Sonatrach, the national oil company, is the largest company in Africa generating revenues in excess of $76.1bn and employing over 120,000 people in 2012. Algeria has the second largest army in Africa and in the Arab World, after Egypt, and has Russia and China as her strategic allies and arms furnisher. 672,993 individuals reach the military age annually. There are over 500,000 active front-line and 400,000 reserve personnel. Algeria is equipped with more than a thousand tanks, 1800 armoured fighting vehicles, over 400 air crafts, 188 helicopters, 6 submarines. With a defense budget of over $10.5 bn, Algeria will continue to be among the African countries with the best military strength.

3. ETHIOPIA

Flag of Ethiopia - African Countries With the Highest Military Strength

Ethiopia has a population of 94.1 million. It is Africa’s oldest independent country and its second largest in terms of population. Ethiopia has found a way to transform her population into a military stronghold in Africa. With a manpower of 38 million people, 24 million of this population fit for active service and almost 2 million people reaching the military age every year, the country is one of the strongest in Africa. Ethiopia has over 560 tanks and 780 armoured vehicles, 183 multi-launch rocket system (MLRS), 81 air crafts and 39 helicopters to hover around any country plotting any form of invasion.The entire Ethiopia’s defence is supported by 182,500 front-line personnel and over $340 million defence budget to take care of things every 365 days.

4. SOUTH AFRICA

Flag of South Africa

Republic of South Africa, is an African country located at the southern tip of the continent. South Africa is the 25th largest country in the world by area and the 24th most populous country with over 54 million people. When it comes to military power, South Africa has got what it takes to be among the top countries in Africa strong enough to be recognised. Half of South Africa’s population are within the manpower class; 14 million are fit for service and almost a million people (964,139) are getting to military age annually. South Africa has 88,000 active front-line and 17,000 active reserve personnel. On military equipment, South Africa has 191 tanks and 1430 armoured fighting vehicles, 118 self-propelled guns, 240 rocket projectors and 213 total number of air crafts. 4 frigates and 3 submarines keep the shores safe and there is over $4.6 bn spent on defence every year.

5. NIGERIA

Flag of Nigeria

Located at the shores of West Africa is the country that is home to a staggering 170 million people. With the available manpower of over 72 million people, there are more than 40 million people who are fit for service with 3.5 million people reaching the military service year every year. Nigeria has 363 tanks, 680 towed-artillery and more than 1,400 armoured fighting vehicles. Nigeria has 96 total air crafts and 36 helicopters, 51 coastal defence crafts and 2 mine warfare. The large population is kept safe with a yearly budget of over $2.3 bn.

More African countries with the highest military strength and fire power continues on the next page with more tanks, armoured fighting vehicles (AFVs), fighters and interceptors just to name a few.
See Also:
Countries in Africa: List of African Countries 
Top 10 Most Dangerous Countries in Africa

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  • agaugust

    From Wikipedia, the military power of these countries armed forces are ranked as:

    1. Egypt
    2. Algeria
    3. Nigeria, South Africa, Ethiopia in equal power
    4. Angola, Eritrea in equal power

  • J.jacques Ndatimana.

    Yeah just wonderful to know our posirion.

  • akporue charles

    Nigeria was firstly known as the world most strongest country with military that can battle on land effectively and efficiently. But today that record is no more. But i want to tell you that Nigeria still remain one of the top military in the world and undergoes extensive training.

  • steven

    Nigeria has one of best trained army in the world and she is playing more role in african stability. Most nigerian officers are trained in the usa, Britain,germany etc. There is no african force that has the military experience like nigerian army. Ask any african country if they can go to war with nigeria and hear with dey will say.No country is a threat to nigeria because they dare not.Nigerian army has lead lots of other african countries eg in mali and so many more.Why didn’t south africa with all its weapons lead the fight in mali. We can manage any weapons at our disposal and that is why Nigerian army remains the best fighting force in Africa.

  • Ayoola Igwe S.

    Na wa o. See analysis. My take is that Nigerian govt should pay more attention to internal developmentp. So that Nigeria will not have the Soviet Union experience during the Cold War. We need to grow domestically first!

  • David

    hahah Steven, when and where did you fabricate this story?. Totally wrong, study about Ethiopia

  • amde

    Ethiopia has one of the strongest military force in Africa with tight ground military power.

  • Mahmoud Badr

    We will test it soon :D
    Watch out when Eritrea will knock your door

  • to the author

    haha false don’t trust wikipedia

  • Bantustani

    Tell that to the birds. Wipe out Boko Haram before you start bragging

  • Bantustani

    Cant even beat Boko Haram

  • Sjob

    Ethiopia couldn’t even win from Somalia

  • carmouflagger

    Boko Haram is still standing because we have a clown for president. We definitely have the best trained Armed forces on the continent. Need i remind you of all the peacekeeping missions we’ve carried out?

  • Keith

    better than this article which claims Ethiopia number 2 when that country spends less than 400mln dollars on its army compared to south Africa which spends 4bln dollars

  • Keith

    rubbish naiga cant even deal with boko haram!!! in other countries its an abomination to have rebels or sections of the country being run by armed gunman yet that’s daily life in north Niaga

  • jm

    How can an army be good if they are corrupt and undisciplined ? For example look at how Kenya handled that recent mall terrorist attack ? !

  • Eshe

    It is Ethiopian who brings your today’s independence and freedom from colonialism and this the thing that rejoice us Ethiopians and all African’s too…

  • Eshe

    Somalia is under Ethiopian colonialism and Ethiopia serves as a Somalian guard like from alshebab’s attack.

  • Geffrey Jayson

    Guys….Kenyan soldiers are suburb,what they’ve done in Somalia is unforgattable….they battled it out

  • ruku

    strong millitary country they should have peace on there land but look at kenya .south africa nigeria algeria ethiopia. eggypt morroco with northern muslim fighter libya with group army lets wake up we are still very week to seek for our internal problem to me the list is nonesense .

  • kordofan

    When Africa is a nuke power continents?

  • Oliver

    Such a very big gap between the Egyptian army and the rest of the counties listed!!! As if they are playing in a different arena. So what you are guys talking about here!? Which is more stronger! South Africa or Nigeria or Ethiopia. They are all almost the same. Can’t you see the difference in the numbers of the aircraft and tanks…. Etc between Egypt and any other county in the list !! Grow up plz and be more realistic. There is no African country is even close to the world level except Egypt so don’t waste ur time fighting and arguing about nothing!!!

  • spartacus

    my friend boko haram will come in to your country and wipe it of so close you toilet okay

  • spartacus

    when next you comment think before you write do not think from your anus all the power country face rebel before let them come in to the capital and take over from the government and stop and let see nigeria till remain africa stronghold even SA can not stand in front of our government or threaten nigeria with it weapon we took out liberia mali somalia even outside africa boko haram time never reach when is time all of them will pay okay so piss off

  • Emmy

    my friend, make your point and stop talking thrash about the President of Nigeria. You know nothing about how the Military of Nigeria is constituted.

  • Bantustani

    Hahaha. Boko Haram have to go through Cameroon, DRC and Uganda to get to us. We will sit and watch.

  • Kola Adekola

    Absolutely stupid comment.
    You are the clown, not my President.

  • Verite7

    Chad is number 1, ask the Libyans the know!

  • http://www.w3sketch.com Thank Money

    You guys don’t understand what really count as strong military. It’s not because you have money to amass weapons that makes you a strong military. It is the following factors that make you a strong military:

    1. the level of math and science education of your military.
    2. the amount of food your military has (not weapons)
    3. the level of motivation and discipline of your soldiers.

    America is the strongest military the world knows not just because it has the best weapons, because it has the 3 qualities mentioned above. Unknown to many people, in war, food, the skill of your soldiers and motivation count more than weapons.

    I listened to President Obama speaking on one occasion and this is how he opened: ” Firstly, I want to thank our men and women in uniform who fight for America. I want to assure you that no one fights for America and will ever have to fight for a job when he takes off the uniform”. These words alone are powerful motivation that will make somebody want to die for his country.

    But here in Africa, the reverse is the case. Take for instance the Nigerian case, a country that prides itself as the strongest military in Africa yet it can not overcome a small group of civilian criminals by name: Boko Haram. The soldiers deployed to the battlefield complained primarily of lack of food yet the government spends over $4 billion servicing the military yearly( this is really ridiculous). Boko Haram couldn’t have been a challenge to Nigeria if the military had a high intelligence profile, good motivation of soldiers and a good spirit of oneness. But just look at the way the disgruntled elements turned us to a mess because of selfish interests and compromises within those in power.

    In my opinion, there can only be strong military in Africa until we take the 3 factors mentioned above seriously. No country in Africa has the right to make any superiority claim since we all go to the Western world to buy weapons instead of making our own. Were’re all just on the same level. If for any reason, country A in Africa goes to war with country B, it is the country with the highest foreign support that will win the war!

  • nile

    we are INDEPENDENT! that is enough and we never been colonized, because we are Ethiopian. look how Ethiopia is changing and its influence in Africa perhaps in the world and sooner or later Ethiopia will be one of the strongest nation not in Africa but in the world. Whatever, no country is self sufficient that is why trade is needed so whether we buy weapons from western or made it by our own, does not mean all Africans have the same military power or strength. Nevertheless, we don’t spent $ 4bn for military like Nigerians does because we are smart enough that we know our priority (eradicating poverty) yet still we are not week in military, every African countries knows that. We are INDEPENDENT! That is enough

  • Shareef QB

    EGYPT WHOAA ,,, But it would be better if its 1 African army
    USAfrika

  • Nolawi Solomon

    eritrea will soon be under ethiopias controll like it has been always your army is weak and your country poor

  • hansmoh

    I disagree with this list especially with Nigeria. They can only be in the top 10 with Boko haram. Without them thei are nothing.

  • Denis

    do not trust the information from Ethiopia, they may show you a very little of they have. They will never expose what they have. They are extremely secretive, they see have even five fold of what is reported. And the soldier is naturally warrior and hero.

  • Nicholas

    Ethiopian ground force is totally overwhelming, experienced and hardened by decades of both internal and foreign conflicts that it remains extremely dangerous. Ethiopia’s history is all about war and then victory. Ethiopians seem to enjoy war. It’s like aphrodisiac for them.

  • Lance0013

    Nigerians should step aside and stop talking, you fail to contain bunch of teenage boys called boko haram who can’t even carry an AK47 for 10 minutes without arms shaking. Your Amy harass and decapitate poor villagers claiming they are in search for boko haram militants. Common men had been assigned to join in the campaign armed with sticks and machetes. Your government officials should be charged with crimes against humanity. You probably laying somewhere in hillbrow or sunnyside flats talking shit about SADF under the security of the SADF. the only reason SADF ranks 4th not 2nd on the list is manpower. Otherwise Technology, advanced equipment, readiness and capability its 100%.

  • Films

    WHO BROUGHT THESE?WHOULD THIS CHANGE THE ECONOMY?WOULD THIS BRING BACK OUR GIRLS WHOM THE STUPID FOOLS CALLED BOKO STUPID HARAM HAVE?WOULD THIS LET THE INDIVIDUAL ENJOY EQUALITY,FORGET IT IF ALL THE ABOVE IS NOT PLACE.

  • romeo

    Don’t play with mugabes boys

  • Mahdi

    You’r all just yapping. .. For instance the Ethiopian guy.. you invaded Somali and did nothing. When Kenya Army went there, we achieved greater success in less than 3 months than what Ethiopia did in a year. who’s stronger now?

  • tedd

    Ethiopia is on the top with very minimu budget:less than 400 million. What egyptian can’t control in sinai, what nigerian can’t control boko haram, and what algerians can’t control their islamist militant. just stfu and learn from ethiopian, they will tech how to defeat al-shabab inside somalia, and how to silence terrorist sponsoring ertrea government. Just ask ethiopian how they live while surounded by mafia countries: ertrea- the north, sudan-the west, and somalia-the east. No matter what american non stop $1.5 bill + air craft, jets, tanks, armored vihicles and missiles flow as military aid per a year, no body will not let egypt to loss her #1 position.

  • http://Yahoo Patrick

    Good you have done well but please you have to consider the words you use . anus, nonsense, stupid and all sorts of words will not progress your discussion
    But you did not mention Ghana , why

  • Saint Martee

    What now, brothers are thirsty each others bloods? It seems like we are looking forward to wars than to Africa’s prosperity. Come on guys we can’t compete over stupidity, imagine those who are heavily taxed, only to find out you guys are fundraising money to get guns you saw on sail in the western shops mxm, Africa is better than that. What happened to black is beautiful? Even more with Jesus Christ. Can’t wait to get to the new Jerusalem with my Born Again (BA)soldiers, where there’s not even talk about war,

  • oli’c

    We are proud of our military force Ethiopia had built powerfull defence with less budget it can be a great example for other dictators who try to built great army under violence.

  • Tofik

    ETHIOPIAN MILITARY HISTORY WAS STARTING FROM ITALIAN INVATION PERIOD, SINCE 1933.
    TODAY IS THE SPECIAL AND THE MODERN ARMED COUNTRY TOO

  • meze

    So funny, I am sure the Europeans are enjoying this. They divided us, they gave us weapons and now they are ranking us. African Fools, stop being a stream of water which follows the path made for it.
    Unite all this power and we’ll be untouchable.

  • Dennis

    Now that we have oil, titanium and maybe uranium….its safe to say we will be going be up the list vrty soon

    Kenya

  • George

    Kenya still has the most disciplined military on African soil. Ethiopians withdrew from Somalia with heavy casualties, Kenya went in and their work is evident. They always afford to lend you men and women for missions in West, Central and East Africa.

  • George

    Alshabaab made Somalia lawless in Ethiopia’s watch, we moved in and restored order

  • mhofela

    Don’t forget to put Zimbabwe on the list despite the inflation .Nigeria and South Africa I don’t think the deserve a place in this list

  • oromo

    Ethiopian population is 90 million 80% are Muslims Oromo only are 50% but who controlling the county are unbelievers And they are small group one day we Will cut the their throat of (slaughter) them so guys let’s us talk about Islam and unbelievers forget about Ethiopia,Nigeria Kenya ok

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