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Ukraine invasion has potential ramifications for Latin American procurement

23rd March 2022 - 17:31 GMT | by Wilder Alejandro Sanchez in Washington DC

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Venezuelan S-300VM SAM system. (Photo: Ecuadorian Ministry of Foreign Affairs/Flickr)

Central and South American militaries may have to reconsider their procurement habits in view of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The latest data from SIPRI shows a 55% reduction in arms imports by South American states between 2012–16 and 2017–21. Arms imports by states in South America in 2017–21 were at their lowest level for any five-year period in the past 50 years, according to the SIPRI figures.

Despite this evident drop in demand, South American countries operate a vast quantity of Soviet-era and post-Soviet equipment. As the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues and international sanctions are imposed on Moscow,  an unintended consequence of the conflict may be supply chain problems for Latin American militaries that utilise Russian and Ukrainian military equipment.

Peru, for instance, utilises obsolete T-55 MBTs plus Su-25

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