Three Chinese companies; Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), China North Industries Group (NORINCO) and China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC) with combined revenue of $51.8 Billion have risen to the world’s top 10 Defence companies list compiled by US based publication, Defense News.
This is the first time that three Chinese companies have crashed Defense News’ top 10, an yearly compilation of defence firms by revenue. AVIC was fifth on the list in 2018 with $24.9 billion in revenue, NORINCO eight with $14.8 billion revenue and CASIC tenth with 12.1 billion revenue.
The firms which moved out of the top 10 were Russia's Almaz-Antey (eighth on last year's list, and 15th on this year's list). Leonardo (previously 10th, now 13th) and Thales (previously ninth, now 16th).
It is interesting to note that Almaz-Antey with big ticket deals for its S-300 and S-400 air defence systems has been displaced from the top 10.
Six Chinese companies have made it to the top 15. In all, eight Beijin-based firms have been included in the list of top 100 Global defence manufacturers. These are China South Industries Group Corporation, China Electronics Technology Group, China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation, China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation, and China State Shipbuilding Corporation.
Lockheed's $50.5 billion helped it to retain the top spot while the No. 2 spot was occupied by Boeing with $34 billion in defense revenue. Northrop Grumman ($25.3 billion) Raytheon ($25.2 billion) and Aviation Industry Corporation of China ($24.9 billion) round out the top five.
It is interesting to note that AVIC’s $24.9 billion revenue at fifth spot is close to that of No.3 Northrop Grumman and No. 4 Raytheon.
Unlike western firms Chinese companies do not announce their contracts. The huge modernization drive of the Chinese Peoples’ Liberation Army may have helped it to record the big sales numbers.