Norinco is also known outside of China for its high-tech defense products, some of which are adaptations of Soviet equipment. Norinco produces precision strike systems, amphibious assault weapons and equipment, long-range suppression weapon systems, anti-aircraft & anti-missile systems, information & night vision products, high-effect destruction systems, fuel air bombs, anti-terrorism & anti-riot equipment and small arms.
Norinco was established in 1980 with the approval of the State Council of China, and is overseen by the Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense (COSTIND). According to the congressional testimony of Gary Milhollin of the Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control in 1997, Norinco subsidiaries in the U.S. include: Beta Chemical, Beta First, Beta Lighting, Beta Unitex, China Sports (California), Forte Lighting, Larin, NIC International (New Jersey).
In 1994, some employees of Norinco came under federal investigation from both the FBI as well as the BATF after a successful sting dubbed “Operation Dragon Fire.” In May 1996, in what was called "the largest seizure of fully operational automatic weapons in U.S. history, 14 individuals and an Atlanta, Georgia company were indicted for the unlicensed importation and sale of 2,000 AK-47's into the United States. U.S. Customs agents posing as arms traffickers convinced a group of Chinese arms dealers, including three Norinco representatives, that they were in the market to buy guns for drug rings and street gangs. "The defendants offered the government undercover agents more sophisticated weapons, including hand-held rocket launchers, mortars, anti-aircraft missiles, silenced machine guns and even tanks," said Wayne Yamashita of the U.S. Customs Service. The Customs Service discovered during the investigation that these weapons were bound for Oakland, California street gangs. According to an affidavit signed by two of the undercover agents involved in the investigation, representatives from Norinco offered to sell urban gangs shoulder-held missile launchers capable of downing a large commercial airliner.
In August 2003, the Bush administration imposed sanctions on Norinco for allegedly selling missile-related goods to Iran. While not formally joining the multinational effort to restrict the proliferation of missiles, China did commit in 2000, not to assist in any way the development by other countries of MTCR-class missile technology. Neither the Chinese government nor Norinco has denied doing business with Iranian companies, although they did deny that it was for missile related purposes at the Shahid Hemmat Industrial Group, Iran’s key manufacturer of ballistic and non ballistic missiles. Norinco has called the sanctions "groundless and unjustified" and "entirely unreasonable.
These sanctions led to a prohibition on imports into the US of the remaining types of firearms and ammunition not covered by the 1993 ban.
UC RUSAL Enters into Purchase Agreement with NORINCO Concerning Share Acquisition in Shenzhen North Investments.
Nov 25, 2011; Moscow, Nov 25, 2011 - (ACN Newswire) - UC RUSAL (SEHK: 486, Euronext: RUSAL/RUAL, MICEX: RUALR, RTS: RUALR), the world's largest...
US Patent Issued to Norinco on Nov. 15 for "Device for a Pavement Manhole with a Support Frame for Closing a Panel Hinged on the Frame Using Permanent Articulation Means" (French Inventor)
Nov 16, 2011; ALEXANDRIA, Va., Nov. 16 -- United States Patent no. 8,057,123, issued on Nov. 15, was assigned to NORINCO (Ibouvillers,...
WIPO ASSIGNS PATENT TO NORINCO FOR "VALVE BOX HAVING MEANS FOR BLOCKING THE COLLAR THEREOF RELATIVE TO THE BASE OF THE COLLAR, COLLAR AND BASE, AND METHOD FOR INSTALLING THE VALVE BOX" (FRENCH INVENTOR)
Jul 21, 2011; GENEVA, July 21 -- Publication No. WO/2011/083277 was published on July 14. Title of the invention: "VALVE BOX HAVING MEANS FOR...