A survey conducted by the Small Arms Survey in June reports that American civilians own “more than those held by civilians in the other top 25 countries combined.”
The study’s author, Aaron Karp, said: “The key to the United States, of course, is its unique gun culture. American civilians buy an average of 14 million new firearms every year, and that means the United States is an overwhelming presence on civilian markets.”
The report said the numbers include legal and illegal firearms in civilian hands, ranging from improvised craft weapons to factory-made handguns, rifles, shotguns and, in some countries, even machine guns, TIME reported.
The estimate of more than 1 billion firearms worldwide at the end of 2017 also includes 133 million such weapons held by government military forces and 22.7 million by law enforcement agencies.