Firearms in the World’s Most Violent Country

Between 2010 and 2015, Salvadorans were registering firearms at a rate of 11,000 per year. This suggests 30 new firearms were registered every day in a country where the vast majority of crimes are committed with guns. In a market that had sales of almost $2 million in 2014, four firms dominated gun imports.

The inhabitants of the world’s most violent country have been spending more than $1.5 million on guns annually. Although the market’s total size and the number of guns in civilian hands is not entirely certain, even just taking the quantity of guns imported legally in the last 10 years indicate there would be enough for one in every fifty residents to have one.

In reality, the total supply of guns is much greater when taking into account the hundreds of thousands that were already flooding the country at the beginning of this century. In 2003, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) estimated there were 450,000 firearms distributed among the civilian population, about half of which were illegal.

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