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Russian arms sales soar on domestic spending

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The Russian company with the biggest increase in sales in 2013 was the Tactical Missiles Corporation, registering a 118-percent hike, according to SIPRI.

STOCKHOLM (AFP): Sales by Russian arms manufacturers continue to expand thanks to Moscow's investments despite a downturn in global defence spending, a Stockholm-based think-tank has said.

"The remarkable increases in Russian companies' arms sales in both 2012 and 2013 are in large part due to uninterrupted investments in military procurement by the Russian government during the 2000s," said Siemon Wezeman, senior researcher at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) on Monday.

Sales by Russian-based arms firms grew by 20 per cent in 2013, according to SIPRI.

However, figures for the 100 biggest arms companies declined for the third year in a row, with a two-percent drop in sales in 2013 to USD 402 billion (322 billion euros).

SIPRI's report does not include China due to a lack of reliable data. China's companies supply a military that enjoys the world's second-biggest budget.

The Russian company with the biggest increase in sales in 2013 was Tactical Missiles Corporation, which registered a 118-percent hike, followed by Almaz-Antey, with a 34 percent increase.

Almaz-Antey is now the 12th largest arms manufacturer in the world, getting closer to the top 10, "which has been exclusively populated by arms producers from the US or Western Europe since the end of the Cold War," SIPRI said.

The think-tank mentioned the withdrawal from Afghanistan and Iraq as one of the main reasons for a 4.5-percent decline in arms sales by US companies.

Despite the decrease, the US still dominates the list with six companies in the top 10.

US group Lockheed Martin is number one, with sales of USD 35.5 billion in 2013, followed by fellow-US firm Boeing.

As for the buyers, world military expenditure fell in 2013 by 1.9 per cent, mostly dragged down by cuts in the United States and other Western countries, SIPRI said in a previous report published in April.

Russia was the third-largest spender in defence after the US and China and has more than doubled its military expenditure since 2004, according to SIPRI's April report.

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Russia  Defence  SIPRI  China  US  Missile  Procurement  
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