China becomes the world’s second-largest arms producer, a Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) announced on Monday. The United States remains the largest arms producer so far.
China, the Asian superpower, is boosting its weapon manufacturing, according to the SIPRI report. Four Chinese arms groups generate sufficient sales to be ranked among the world’s top 20 weapons sellers.
In 2017, the four groups have combined sales worth $54.1 billion, that allowed China to be ranked as the world’s second-largest weapons manufacturer.
The newly-released report by SIPRI shows also that China jumped ahead of Russia, from whom they used to buy many weapons.
“This research represents the most comprehensive picture of Chinese companies’ weapons production to date,” SIPRI commented on the recent report.
As Swedish researchers say, the new figures on armaments production are likely an underestimate, given the lack of transparency in China. However, the vast majority of the Chinese munitions sold every year are bought by the different branches of China’s People’s Liberation Army.
In the previous report published in 2017, China set the sixth place in the world, according to SIPRI. These fresh figures place it ahead of Russia, which was a major importer for China in past. Just in two years, the situation has changed cardinally, the experts noticed.
Generally speaking, SIPRI ranks individual companies rather than countries. In fact, just three Chinese arms manufacturers would be placed in the top 10.