Russia has lost an estimated 50 billion rubles ($760 million) in potential gun and ammo sales since international sanctions sealed off the U.S. market in 2014, the state-owned Rostec corporation has said.
Russia’s estimated 4.5 million gun owners with 7.3 million registered small arms pale in comparison with the nearly 400 million civilian-owned firearms in the U.S.
“Domestic producers lose about 10 billion rubles of revenue a year because of sanctions,” Sergei Abramov, who heads Rostec’s conventional arms and ammunition branch, told the RBC news website Friday.
“It’s not difficult to calculate the amount over all five years of sanctions,” he added.
Around 80 percent of Russian-made small arms and ammunition were exported to the U.S. and Europe before the sanctions were imposed, the outlet estimated, citing an unnamed arms manufacturer.
Since then, the U.S. has begun buying ammo for Russian- and Soviet-made weapons from China and Bulgaria, Abramov said.
Rostec is currently devising steps to revive Russia’s ammunition manufacturing industry by March, RBC reported.
Russia’s biggest firearms maker Kalashnikov drafted legislative amendments in mid-2018 to relax national gun laws and improve sales.