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Kalashnikov Set to Increase Civilian Products Share Over Western Sanctions

© Sputnik / Evgeny Biyatov / Go to the photo bankKalashnikov mount displayed at the Russian Defense Ministry's Innovation Day 2015 exhibition, on the premises of the congress and exhibition center of the Russian armed forces in Kubinka, Moscow Region
Kalashnikov mount displayed at the Russian Defense Ministry's Innovation Day 2015 exhibition, on the premises of the congress and exhibition center of the Russian armed forces in Kubinka, Moscow Region - Sputnik International
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The Western sanctions against Russia’s famed small arms maker Kalashnikov forced the company to strive for an increase in the share of civilian products, the concern’s marketing director said.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) – In July 2014, Washington prohibited imports of Kalashnikov products to the United States citing Russia's alleged interference in the Ukrainian internal conflict. In September, the company faced a limited access to the EU financial markets.

"The [Russian] Defense Ministry still remains one of our major customers. We are proud that we fulfill completely the state defense order. However, today, the share of small arms under the state defense order does not exceed 5 percent, and one of the main targets is to increase the share of civilian products designed for the domestic market," Vladimir Dmitriev told Russia’s Izvestiya newspaper in an interview published on Monday.

The arms manufacturer plans to pay more attention to the Russian domestic market in 2016, he added.

"Prior to the introduction of sanctions, the United States has been for us the main sales market for the civilian small arms, up to 70 percent of the products of this type was send there. This year we were not able to fully participate in the international exhibitions… At the largest Eurosatory exhibition in Paris we will be able to show the Western partners only 3D models of our prospective shooting complexes," Dmitriev outlined.

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Kalashnikov is the leading Russian developer and manufacturer of automatic and sniper combat weapons, guided artillery ammunition, and a wide range of civilian products, including shotguns and sporting rifles, as well as machines and tools.

Kalashnikov Concern was created in August 2013 when the Izhmash and Izhmekh manufacturers were merged and formally renamed after the well-known Soviet assault rifle.

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