Letter: Tales from the Victorian arms bazaar

Sir: The contention that arms sales enable Britain to "punch above its weight in diplomacy" ignores the reality of the contemporary global arms market ("British lion claws a king-sized stake in the world's arms bazaar", 26 February). The increasingly competitive scramble for defence contracts in the post-Cold War era has made the world's arms bazaar a buyer's, rather than a seller's market. Importers are not only able to arrange favourable economic agreements; they can also exert political leverage, so eager are the exporting nations to retain contracts in the shrinking global market.


Arms Trade Programme Co-ordinator


London WC1