For the first time in over 30 years, and in a tightly-controlled presentation, the United States unveiled a new strategic bomber on Friday. The nuclear-capable B-21 Raider is expected to enter service in 2027 and is seen as a major part of the States’ response to military buildup by China. The estimated cost was also revealed: The plane’s manufacturer, Northrop Grumman, can expect $700m per aircraft. Many other companies will also profit from the project, with the arms production company stating that 400 suppliers are involved in the project. One of these is Raytheon Technologies – whose subsidiary Pratt & Whitney will be manufacturing the engines for the new stealth jet.
Both Northrop Grumman and Raytheon feature on the ranking of the world’s largest arms-production companies. Despite a six percent fall in arms sales for Northrop Grumman, the aerospace and defense technology firm generated $30 billion in 2021, making it the fourth largest in the world by this measure. Raytheon’s arms sales grew by nine percent to $42 billion, putting it behind only Lockheed Martin with $60 billion.
As a glance at this infographic reveals, U.S. companies dominate the top of the list. Two Chinese companies also make it though – having both posted strong growth in 2021, Norinco and AVIC had combined arms sales of over $40 billion last year. According to the source, Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), arms sales of the world’s largest 100 arms-producing companies grew by 1.9 percent to $592 billion in 2021, despite supply chain challenges.