Non-Lethal Weapons Market – Market Overview
Non-lethal weapons are used by both the military and the law enforcement forces. Unlike lethal weapons, that can cause casualties, the non-lethal weapons are used to reduce the fatalities to a large extent. These weapons are specifically designed to cause temporary harm or injury to a person. Non-lethal weapons are mainly used for crowd dispersion, controlling civil wars, and controlling illegal protests against governments.
Non-lethal have become the weapon of choice for state police forces in many parts of the world where they do not have permit to use lethal weapons on civilians. One of the reasons for this is also the easy availability of non-lethal weapons. They are available legally for the state's use. There are thousands of companies in approximately 100 countries producing small arms and non-lethal weapons. The Small Arms industry has become globalized, with most of the small arms, including non-lethal weapons now being produced in different countries.
Militarization of police forces by providing them with more arms and weapons is also one of the major drivers. For example, there is an increase in the rate of police militarization in the US, under the program ‘Urban shield’ fuelled by the money from Department of Homeland Security. In the US, the Department of Defense is also authorized to donate surplus military equipment to the police. The police are also authorized to purchase weapons for counter-drug actions, homeland security, and emergency response activities. Similarly, the EU has established a multinational police force, the EGF, with military status, which performs police tasks with the scope of crisis management operations. The EGF consists of more than 3,000 militarized police from member countries such as France, Portugal, Netherlands, Italy, Romania, and Spain, and can be deployed in any of the EU member nations.
Armies across the world conduct mock drills at regular intervals. Mock drills prepares the armed forces for conflict scenarios. For mock drill purposes, a large number of non-lethal weapons such as the guns that fire pellets, pepper guns and non-lethal grenades are used. In conflict regions such as Kashmir (India), military forces and the state police largely use non-lethal weapons during mock drills. They learn ways to control protestors without collateral damage.
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Non-Lethal Weapons Market – Competitive Analysis
The global non-lethal weapons market is a highly fragmented market due to the presence of a large number of established manufacturers, small-sized vendors, and medium-sized vendors. The competitive environment in this market is likely to intensify, during the forecast period, with the increase in product extensions, technological innovations, and increase in the number of mergers and acquisitions. It is expected that international players may grow organically during the forecast period by acquiring smaller players.
Established companies are acquiring smaller companies that have a weak financial position and a low market share. Such acquisitions are helping major companies increase their market shares and their geographical presence. It is also helping them enhance their product portfolio. For instance, The Safariland Group acquired the explosive ordnance disposal and crew survivability businesses of Allen-Vanguard Corp., the leader in customized solutions for defeating terrorist and extremist threats.