the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said in a statement on Monday that sales of arms and military services by the world’s largest arms-producing companies continued to grow in 2017.
According to SIPRI, Russia moved to second place in the ranking, leaving the United Kingdom behind.
“Sales of arms and military services by the world’s largest arms-producing and military services companies - the SIPRI Top 100 - totaled $398.2 billion in 2017,” the statement read.
“The total for the SIPRI Top 100 in 2017 is 2.5% higher than in 2016 and represents an increase of 44% since 2002 (the first year for which comparable data is available; figures exclude China),” the document noted, adding that “this is the third consecutive year of growth in Top 100 arms sales.”
According to SIPRI, Russia has become the second largest arms producer in the Top 100.
“The combined arms sales of Russian companies accounted for 9.5% of the Top 100 total, making Russia the second largest arms producer in the Top 100 in 2017 - a position that had been occupied by the United Kingdom since 2002,” the statement stated, pointing out that “the arms sales of the 10 Russian companies listed in the Top 100 increased by 8.5% in 2017, to $37.7 billion)”.
“Russian companies have experienced significant growth in their arms sales since 2011,” Senior Researcher with SIPRI’s Arms and Military Expenditure Program Siemon Wezeman said, as cited in the statement.
“This is in line with Russia’s increased spending on arms procurement to modernize its armed forces,” he added.
According to Research Assistant with SIPRI’s Arms and Military Expenditure Program Alexandra Kuimova, Russia’s Almaz-Antey Air and Space Defense Corporation “which was already Russia’s largest arms-producing company, increased its arms sales by 17% in 2017, to $8.6 billion.”
“Along with Almaz-Antey, three other Russian companies in the Top 100 increased their arms sales by more than 15%: United Engine Corporation (25%), High Precision Systems (22%) and Tactical Missiles Corporation (19%)," the statement said.
“With 42 companies listed in 2017, companies based in the United States continued to dominate the Top 100 in 2017,” SIPRI said.
According to Director of SIPRI’s Arms and Military Expenditure Program Aude Fleurant, “US companies directly benefit from the US Department of Defense’s ongoing demand for weapons.”
Lockheed Martin remained the world’s largest arms producer in 2017, with arms sales of $44.9 billion, SIPRI added.