U.S. arms sales abroad could jump by $3.3 billion, to more than $15 billion this year, with much of the increase going to the Middle East, The New York Times reported Monday.

A confidential report from the State Department to Congress lists potential sales to 33 countries, Israel, which would get $3.6 billion worth of arms, and Egypt, which would get $2.7 billion, the Times said.The request gives more attention to the Persian Gulf region than requests of previous years, with the Reagan administration asking for advanced arms and equipment for Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates to counter threats from Iran, the newspaper said.