A large American arms manufacturer is doubling its production

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Arms maker Lockheed Martin plans to nearly double production of Javelin missiles, an anti-tank weapon that helps Ukraine fight Russia’s invasion, General Director James Taiclet said in an interview on Sunday, Reuters reports.

The company’s goal is to increase production to 4,000 Javelin missiles a year from 2,100 a year today, Taiclet said in an interview with CBS News.

The growth will take up to a few years, he said.

U.S. President Joe Biden last week visited a Lockheed unit in Alabama that manufactures weapons, which are jointly produced by Lockheed and Raytheon Technologies, in an effort to press Congress to approve the proposed $ 33 billion aid package for Ukraine.

The United States has delivered $ 3.4 billion worth of weapons to Ukraine since Russia invaded the country on February 24, including Javelin missiles, as well as howitzers, Stinger anti-aircraft systems, ammunition and protective equipment.

“We can start intensifying now and increase production immediately,” said Taiclet, noting that the company anticipates increased demand for “large enough systems.”

“We are planning for the long term and not just for Javelin,” he said, noting that he expects increased demand beyond the war in Ukraine due to threats from Russia and China.