South Africa imported a quarter of a billion rands’ worth of military equipment in 2017, according to unverified figures from the National Conventional Arms Control Committee (NCACC), and this included electronics, vehicles and ammunition.
The NCACC 2017 Annual Report states that R256 million worth of equipment was imported in 2017. This included six armoured personnel carrier (APC) hulls worth R2.2 million from the United Arab Emirates, eight APCs worth R20 million from the UAE (these are most likely JAWS APCs destined for Botswana and imported by LMT as the LM5); two 70 mm rocket launchers from Belgium (R2 million), 18 20×128 mm canons from Switzerland worth R43 million, four missile launchers from the United States (R2.5 million), 12 84 mm weapons from Sweden (R2.7 million) and 100 70 mm rockets from Belgium (R3 million).
Small arms imports included 10 assault rifles and two 9 mm submachineguns from Austria worth R300 000; six sniper rifles from Switzerland worth R650 000;
Ammunition included 50 rocket flares and 100 40 mm rounds from Brazil; 100 70 mm rockets from Belgium, 70 000 12.7×99 mm rounds from Spain (R237 000); 250 ‘projectiles’ from the United States, 103 600 ‘various rounds’ from Finland (R6.4 million); and 400 ‘various rounds’ and 1 600 .300 cartridges from Switzerland while Sweden supplied 360 84 mm rounds (R3 million), 15 000 5.56 mm tracer rounds and 15 000 7.62 mm tracer rounds.
Other imports mainly comprised electronics and sensors, such as thermal imagers (10 from Canada, 11 from Germany, three from Belgium), intercoms, encoders, thermal modules, rangefinders, accelerometers, gyroscopes, antennas, cameras, rangefinders, cameras, ‘monoculars’, decoders, telescopic infrared sights, inertial navigation units and software. These items came from Germany, France, Switzerland, the UK, Belgium, Finland, Canada, Czech Republic and United States
Various other imports included 22 fire extinguishers from the UK (R2.2 million); a radar station from France (R50 million); and a missile simulator from Switzerland.
In 2017 the NCACC said South Africa exported between R3 and R4 billion worth of military equipment.