The People’s Republic of China has claimed the spot for the world’s second-largest weapons manufacturer, according to new research by a leading peace institute.
The Asian superpower jumped ahead of Russia, from whom they used to buy many weapons.
The United States of America retains the spot of number one as China comes behind, according to a Swedish research institute announcement on Monday.
New research from the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) shows that four Chinese arms groups generate sufficient sales to be ranked among the world’s top 20 weapons sellers. The four groups have combined sales worth $54.1 billion (€49.1 billion) in 2017.
They also noted that the new figures are likely an underestimate, given the lack of transparency in China.
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, SIPRI placed the country at sixth place in the world. These new figures place it ahead of Russia. In the past, China was a major importer of weapons from Russia.
SIPRI ranks individual companies rather than countries. Three Chinese arms manufacturers would be placed in the top 10.