• The Wing Loong, a Chinese-made unmanned drone, is displayed in a hangar.

The Wing Loong, a Chinese-made unmanned drone, is displayed in a hangar. (Photo : www.zerohedge.com)

Findings by a research institute revealed that China’s aviation industry could possibly become the world’s largest marker and exporter of military drones by 2023, when the value for military drones is expected to grow to $2.3 billion.

A report by Reuters published on April 29 said that China's open export policies on weapons and the lower prices contributed to the initial success in the sales of Chinese military drones to countries having difficulty dealing with Western states such as the U.S. and Israel.

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The report said that despite China's limited success in exported manned military aircraft, the lower entry threshold produced more favorable results.

Some leading Chinese manufacturers were reportedly trying to catch up with their Western competitors, the report added.

"Demand for all our products has shot up, simply because the world has become more chaotic," Yun Jianfei, chief of Beijing Heweiyontai Science and Technology, said in the report.

The report also compared the price of a Chinese-made military drone with one made by the U.S. It said that the Wing Loong drone costs $1 million, while the U.S.-made MQ-9 Reaper, which is similar in appearance to the Chinese drone, is being sold at around $30 million.

The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said that China became the second country in the world to openly export armed military drones after it sold five Chinese-made units to Nigeria last year.

Sina reported that the country sold more than 200 units of the Rainbow, a military drone series developed by the China Academy of Aerospace Aerodynamics and China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC) to nine nations that included Egypt and Pakistan.