Maryland ranked fourth in the country for overall spending in FY20; steep increase noted in contract awards over FY19

BALTIMORE, MD (November 30, 2021) – Maryland ranked fourth out of U.S. states for overall defense spending in federal fiscal year 2020, moving up one spot from fiscal year 2019, according to a report from the U.S. Department of Defense Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation. Overall spending topped $30.4 billion, compared to $26.1 billion the previous year.


“This report confirms Maryland’s status as a powerhouse of the defense industry.  Our leading military installations and thriving community of innovative defense contractors attracted this increased federal funding and continue to fuel economic growth across the state,” said Maryland Commerce Secretary Kelly M. Schulz. “Commerce is proud to support Maryland’s important contributions to cybersecurity, aerospace, and other cutting-edge defense research & development areas.”

Since Maryland is a leader in research, development, test and evaluation activities, the state benefitted from a $9.2 billion increase in funding for those activities in the Department of Defense’s FY2020 budget.

The report also placed Maryland fourth among states for the percentage of the state’s GDP (7%) that was attributable to defense spending in fiscal year 2020. The percentage of total U.S defense spending done in Maryland increased from 4.7% to 5.1% from fiscal year 2019 to fiscal year 2020.

Contracts awarded to defense contractors totaled $22.4 billion, ranking Maryland fifth among states; this is an increase of $4.5 billion over fiscal year 2019, when Maryland ranked sixth. Anne Arundel, Baltimore and Queen Anne’s Counties saw the largest increases in contract spending, driven in part by awards to contractors in those areas.

Maryland ranked No. 8 for total defense personnel in fiscal year 2020 with 95,491; the state ranked No. 5 for personnel spending, with a combined payroll of $8 billion. Top defense contractors are Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Johns Hopkins University, Federal Resources Supply and Leidos.

The Maryland Department of Commerce continues to support the state’s community of defense contractors through programs and resources including:

A previous Commerce program, the Maryland Defense Diversification Assistance Program, provided support and training to defense contractors so they could diversify their revenue and client base and insulate themselves from fluctuations in the federal defense budget.

About Maryland Commerce

The Maryland Department of Commerce stimulates private investment and creates jobs by attracting new businesses, encouraging the expansion and retention of existing companies, and providing financial assistance to Maryland companies. The Department promotes the State’s many economic advantages and markets local products and services at home and abroad to spur economic development and international investment, trade and tourism. Because they are major economic generators, the Department also supports the Arts, film production, sports and other special events. For more information, visit

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