The value of the anti-ship missile market is expected to climb over the next 15 years, according to data compiled by Forecast International.

The anti-ship missile market will be worth about $20 billion up until 2031, based on data derived from what Forecast International call their ‘Platinum Forecast System’. During this time, the market’s value of production will steadily climb, from $1.089 billion in 2017 to a peak of $1.467 billion in 2027; the market will slightly taper off in the out years.

“China will produce the most missiles, but Western firms and Russia will win the greatest number of individual export contracts,” said Larry Dickerson, senior missile analyst at FI.

“The systems are overshadowed by their anti-armour and strike counterparts, which are routinely hitting targets in Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Libya,” said Dickerson. “Anti-ship missiles have had few opportunities to shine in the last 20 years. Nevertheless, these systems remain an important part of naval combat.”

New systems are in development, but will not be available until the 2020s. Europe is considering the joint development of a new anti-ship missile to replace a plethora of existing systems.

Dickerson notes that the anti-ship market could eventually merge with its strike missile counterpart.

“Today, different missiles, such as Harpoon and SCALP-EG, perform these missions,” Dickerson said. “Yet missiles capable of engaging a wider array of targets than their predecessors are growing in popularity. Eventually, a single missile could be capable of hitting surface warships and land-based targets, meeting the military’s anti-ship and strike mission requirements with a single weapon.”

Forecast International is a major provider of ‘Market Intelligence and Consulting in the areas of aerospace, defence, power systems and military electronics’.


  1. I just hope we are able to design something that exceeds the Chinese and Russian offerings with Perseus. Trouble is we are behind the curve. We need something that hits hard and very fast, but with a greater stand off distance than theirs. It will have to evade evermore sophisticated AA missiles too.
    Missiles of all types seem to be a huge priority now with the boat or plane that carries missiles with the best range, radar and seeker software having a massive advantage. Makes a cheap low end platform highly lethal and effective. Therefore we should be putting more emphasis on missile development in my opinion.

    • With our tiny fleet they need to be armed with as many of the best anti ship missiles we can afford.
      The fact harpoon has not been replaced yet by western navies is a joke. Most ciws would make mincemeat of them even in a saturation strike, that’s not even including missile defence’s. Even lrasm doesn’t seem that much of an improvement

      • I don’t understand the LRASM negativity. It seems that people have forgotten about all the criteria for a good SSM other than speed. Speed isn’t everything. LRASM is stealthy and clever i.e. you won’t see it coming until impact is imminent/at all, and it doesn’t need the information a previous generation missile like Harpoon needed to be effective, as it can analyse targets and make good decisions autonomously. Not to mention the fact that it has a big warhead, and can be launched from lots of different platforms. Russia plays the information war very well, don’t believe everything you hear about their missile wonder weapons.

        • There is truth in that last statement, I remember 25 years ago everyone telling us how superior their aircraft were and that we would all be helpless should they be used. As it turned out it was more paper specs than actual usable superiority. And certainly as useful as they undoubtedly are in the right hands they have not turned out to be wonder weapons. indeed a lot of that language was used by US (and other) experts, military, politicians trying to frighten the powers that be into giving them more financing.

          I suspect that much of Putin’s present hype has elements of that too to cover their military’s improving but parlous state and fuel nationalism. However one can’t deny that the gap in developing a new anti ship missile in the West is unforgivable, indeed difficult to believe it has become so overdue. What the hell have they been up to after all new ships are pretty pointless if they can operate in hostile environments or simply exist for others shooting practice. How can we have a gap of some ten years when we have such hostility operating both from Russia and increasingly China. The Thought of them cooperating once again in World domination is a lot scarier than most people realise especially while China is being somewhat pragmatic presently but as its hegemony over South east Asia increasingly develops it will have less and less need to worry about the West for its exports and thus freedom to push its developing might.

    • Read up on the Battle of Latakia (1973) in which to see how the Israeli Navy defeated the Syrian navy armed with longer ranged missiles (Styx 50 miles) as opposed to (Gabriel 12 miles).

      Naturally times change and the Russians and Chinese missiles have evolved Yet it does show what can be done.

    • The USN (and the U.S. congress) has finally shaken off its torpor regarding near peer blue water engagements and have been almost frantically seeking ways to improve its ship to ship strike capability. The hasty, almost no bid, forced procurement of the Kongsberg NSM on the LCS’s, the LRASM integration on both air and surface assets (interestingly it was the USAF’s B1 Lancers which received the capability first to be followed by the F18’s and then fleet units) and the expected reintroduction of the Anti Ship Tomahawk into the fleet are all examples of a sudden realization that “OH C**P! We’re WAY behind the power curve! I suspect bolt on, plug and play canister ASM systems will be introduced on the current large amphibious ships such as the San Antonio class and VLS may be integrated into the upcoming new LSD’s. There has also been suggestions that some of the USN’s civilian / mil crewed MSC (RFA) support vessels may be included in the plans to add strike capability to the fleet – the Supply class fast fleet replenishment ships come to mind. They are built to military specs to run with the CSG’s / CBG’s (there’s a major difference in numbers and capabilities between the two) and would be prime candidates if this move occurs.


  2. Anti Ship has been given a low priority over the last 25 years due to there being no peer enemy fleet that threatens. Same with Air Defence. NATO rules the skies and the sea in the War on Terror.

    With a resurgent Russia and now China the west will put more emphasis on it in due course.

  3. The UK seems to be under armed in many ways currently on all its platforms except maybe Tornado and Typhoon. The RN seems very under armed compared to potential adversaries. The USN has a saying “if it floats it fights”. All of their vessels are heavily armed, case in point is the new mark 6 patrol boat, a tiny patrol boat bristling with offensive power. Look on YouTube for that thing. Im also concerned about the number of rounds the UK has in reserve if a shooting war was to start.

    I posted here a few months ago about an auxiliary/survey ship with no armament and was told I was a “fool”, or “dont know what your talking about” by the resident experts who provide more negative responses than positive comments and do not value others contributions. I have since stopped posting as I didn’t appreciate being slagged off. I still read here and the same people post the same negative comments about others.

    When we send auxiliary ships to conduct business that was previously done by a frigate or destroyer it becomes imperative that every ship in the inventory be armed and ready. Thank you.

    • I couldn’t agree more with all your comments both about the ships or slagging off/completely ignoring comments. It seems sometimes the commentators on here have made their own little group and not always welcoming of new people ideas. Maybe that might be mirrored in the forces themselves and why recruitment is down? Most of us on here are all here for the same goal and sometimes “outsiders/amateurs” might come up with good ideas/opinions. At the end of the day everyone is providing a best guessed theory (even the forces don’t declare all capabilities of weapons etc) some may have less knowledge or experience but their opinions shouldn’t be discounted out of hand

        • I have developed the technique wherever I write where such an atmosphere exists to not bother picking up on replies to my posts so that they are writing to themselves and their audience. Write what you want and go elsewhere and express your views its not worth getting involved in the Billy big Bollox stuff from others.

      • Your point of being mirrored in the forces is well made. Certainly in the American armed forces this is occurring – they are developing into a hereditary warrior caste with the overwhelming number of new recruits following parents, grandparents and other close family members into the services (my family included). The recruits also mostly come from very specific geographic regions as well with the South, West (the coastal West) and the Midwest. NOT a good thing whatsoever. Smacks of Rome and ruin to me…


  4. By the 2030’s the state of the art CIWS will be a directed energy weapon or a railgun. An anti-ship missile is going to have to be very fast and very manoeuvrable to acheive a hit against these.

  5. We are able to design the best of the best in many cases, but the problem always seems to be, to little and almost certainly to late.

    Talk on the news today of a possible intervention in Syria. Time to start seriously investing in our armed forces and security services rather than just talking about it.

    The UK should not become solely reliant on other NATO member states for support!

  6. The very existence of more and more advanced missiles makes the concept of white elephants outdated. This country has wasted billions on two large targets in an attempt to be something it isn’t. When will lessons about the true cost of wars and killing be truly learned?

  7. Evening
    Whilst we may not have put as much into Anti-ship missiles as maybe we should over the 25 years we still know how to do it. Sea Eagle, if allowed to fulfil its full promise would have been a perfect air launched anti ship missile.
    I would suggest however we look slightly outside of the box and look at platforms UAV platforms that can loiter, high above the fleet (or single ship for that matter) and launch relativity low cost, high speed munitions that use kinetic as well as explosive energy to engage the target. A 180kg hypersonic missile coming straight down at you is a lot more difficult to engage than today’s cruise missile offerings, just ask the US who have been trying to stop ballistic straight down missile or MIRV type weapons for years.

  8. Thinking outside the box for a minute – how about talking with our Indian friends and buying Brahmos ? (politically sensitive I know but how effective would it be ).

    • The Brahmos is ultimately a Russian missile as it’s basically an uprated version of the Oniks. At least 60% of each missile, including its ramjet propulsion system and active radar seeker are sourced from Russia. This together with substantial anti-British sentiment means that an RN Brahmos is impossible.


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