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HAL, BEL, Indian Ordnance Factories among top 100 global arms manufacturers in 2020: SIPRI


NEW DELHI (PTI):  Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) and Indian Ordnance Factories were among the top 100 global arms-producing and military services companies in 2020, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) has said.

Their aggregated arms sales of USD 6.5 billion were 1.7 per cent higher in 2020 than in 2019 and accounted for 1.2 per cent of the top 100 total, it mentioned in a statement on Monday.

The arms sales of HAL, ranked 42nd, and BEL, ranked 66th, increased by 1.5 per cent and 4.0 per cent, respectively, the SIPRI statement said.

According to it, "Indian Ordnance Factories' (ranked 60th) arms sales rose marginally (by 0.2 per cent)."

Domestic procurement has helped in shielding Indian companies against the negative economic consequences of the pandemic, the SIPRI statement noted.

"In 2020, the Indian Government announced a phased ban on imports of more than a hundred different types of military equipment to support domestic companies and enhance self-reliance in arms production," SIPRI said.

The world's top five arms manufacturers are US-based companies: Lockheed Martin, Raytheon Technologies, Boeing, Northrop Grumman and General Dynamics.

"With a 13 per cent share of total Top 100 arms sales, Chinese arms companies had the second-highest volume of aggregated arms sales in 2020, behind US firms and ahead of British companies," SIPRI noted.

With estimated arms sales of USD 17.9 billion in 2020, NORINCO (ranked seventh) is China's largest arms company and land systems specialist, it mentioned.

Estimated arms sales for AVIC (ranked eighth), China's main military aircraft producer, declined by 1.4 per cent in 2020 to USD 17 billion, according to the statement.

The third Chinese company with arms sales high enough to rank in the top 10 was CETC (ranked ninth), the country's leading producer of military electronics. At USD 14.6 billion, CETC's arms sales fell by 6 per cent in 2020, SIPRI said.

CASIC (ranked 12th), one of China's leading producers of missile and space systems, also recorded a drop in arms sales, it noted. "CASIC's arms sales of USD 11.9 billion in 2020 were 2.8 per cent lower than in 2019."

"The fifth Chinese company in the Top 100 was CSGC (ranked 20th), which manufactures military vehicles," the SIPRI statement mentioned.

CSGC's arms sales rose by 13 per cent in 2020 to USD 5.4 billion, it said.

The border standoff between the Indian and Chinese militaries erupted on May 5 last year following a violent clash in the Pangong lake areas and both sides gradually enhanced their deployment by rushing in tens of thousands of soldiers as well as heavy weaponry.

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