The Colt Manufacturing Company was awarded a $41,924,594 firm-fixed-price foreign military sales contract to produce M4 and M4A1 carbines for 13 countries, the Department of Defense announced Thursday, September 19, the same day the company announced it would temporarily stop producing civilian AR-15 semi-automatic rifles.
The contract awards Colt the rights to manufacture the 5.56mm-chambered assault rifles for Afghanistan, Bahrain, Djibouti, Federated States of Micronesia, Hungary, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Macedonia, Marshall Islands, Palau, St. Vincent and Grenadines and Tunisia.
Work locations are dependent upon each order, and the work is set to be complete by September 18, 2024.
The contract was granted through U.S. Army Contracting Command at Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey.
Colt announced on Thursday that it would pause production of consumer AR-15 rifles due to “significant excess manufacturing capacity” in the civilian sporting market.
“[O]ur warfighters and law enforcement personnel continue to demand Colt rifles and we are fortunate enough to have been awarded significant military and law enforcement contracts,” Colt’s statement read.
“Currently, these high-volume contracts are absorbing all of Colt’s manufacturing capacity for rifles.”
U.S. weapons manufacturers have been under significant pressure to limit or halt sales following a number of mass shootings with semi-automatic rifles in recent years.
Colt said it would continue producing the M1911 pistol and revolvers for the civilian market.