An ‘Uzi’ sub-machine gun.
Photograph by Alfredo Estrella — AFP/Getty Images
By Ben Geier
January 28, 2015

The company that makes perhaps the world’s most famous gun this side of the AK-47 is up for sale, according to a Bloomberg report.

Israel Military Industries Ltd., which manufactures the Uzi sub-machine gun, is to be put up for sale by the state of Israel. Israel’s Government Companies Authority expects the sale of the gun company to be completed by 2016 and bring in around $500 million.

This is the start of an anticipated broader privatization effort in Israel, Bloomberg notes. Other companies — including ones that run the country’s ports, railroads, and post office — are also expected to be sold in the coming years. The effort is expected to bring in 15 billion shekels ($3.75 billion) over the next 3 years, the report said.

In October, Reuters noted that Benjamin Netanyahu, currently Israel’s Prime Minister, has long been an advocate of privatization of state-run businesses in Israel. When he became finance minister a decade ago, he sold off a number of companies, including state banks and El Al, the airline servicing the Middle Eastern nation. Netanyahu considers privatization a key part of transitioning the country to a free-market economy.

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