Tuesday, June 18, 2024

China seizes control of African arms market from Russia

As Russia remains bogged down in its war with Ukraine, China has aggressively captured its share of the arms market in Africa.

Reports from The Economist reveal that Chinese arms exports to Sub-Saharan Africa have surged, surpassing those of Russia, which have plummeted by 44% from 2019 to 2023.

China’s strategic and aggressive marketing tactics, including offering discounts and bonuses, have made it the leading arms supplier to at least 21 African nations. This shift underscores Beijing’s growing influence in the region and the declining prowess of Russia’s defense industry amid sanctions and the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.


The ongoing war has not only strained Russia’s economy but also exposed vulnerabilities in its military-industrial complex. This situation raises concerns about Russia’s future competitiveness in the global arms market.

China’s ability to fill the void left by Russia demonstrates its strategic ambitions and effective market tactics. For many African nations, Chinese weapons offer a cost-effective and reliable alternative, enhancing Beijing’s standing in global defense markets.

The uncertain end to the Ukraine conflict further complicates Russia’s position, making it increasingly difficult to reclaim its market share. This trend could signal a long-term shift in the global arms trade, with China solidifying its role as a dominant supplier in regions once heavily influenced by Russian weaponry.

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Executive Editor

About author:

Dylan Malyasov
Dylan Malyasov
Dylan Malyasov is the editor-in-chief of Defence Blog. He is a journalist, an accredited defense advisor, and a consultant. His background as a defense advisor and consultant adds a unique perspective to his journalistic endeavors, ensuring that his reporting is well-informed and authoritative. read more



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