Philippines receive shipment of new SIG 716 7.62mm marksman rifles to replace M14

The SIG716 G2 marksman rifle, ordered by the Philippine Army.

During presentations by the Philippine Army (PA) at its Army Capability Expo 2019 held last 5-6 December 2019, it was revealed that the PA has received the shipment of SIG 716 G2 7.62x51mm marksman rifles from American firearms manufacturer SIG Sauer USA.

No quantity was revealed during the event, but Philippine defense blogger MaxDefense Philippines reported that there are more than 800 rifles delivered under the PA’s 7.62mm Designated Marksman Rifle project, which is one of the priority projects of the PA under the Horizon 2 modernization phase. A photo of one of the displayed example was posted by MaxDefense Philippines in its social media page.

According to MaxDefense Philippines, the new SIG 716 G2 rifles are equipped with the Trijicon VCOG optics system, and will replace the old M14 7.62x51mm battle/marksman rifles for frontline units. The M14 has been in service with the PA since the 1960s, and is the PA’s standard marksman rifle. Many of the PA’s M14 rifles are in need of repair or replacement due to age and wear.

There is also a possibility that the Philippine Government Arsenal (GA) will be repairing and upgrading the M14 rifles, as it has previous programs involving the improvement of existing M14 rifles for re-issuing to units while waiting for more brand new replacements to be delivered.

The delivery of US-made firearms could have effects in political relations between the Philippine and US governments, as it runs contrary to the claims of the Philippine government that the US government has been rejecting arms export to the Philippines after a separate deal for 27,000 rifles awarded by the Philippine National Police (PNP) with SIG Sauer did not receive an arms export license in 2017 due to concerns that the rifles will be used for extra-judicial matters.

APDR reported last December 2019 that the Indian Army also received their first batch of SIG 716 rifles as it starts replacing older rifles.

[1] MaxDefense Philippines
[2] Philippine Defense Resource

Philippines receive shipment of new SIG 716 7.62mm marksman rifles to replace M14 Philippines receive shipment of new SIG 716 7.62mm marksman rifles to replace M14 Reviewed by Asia Pacific Defense Journal on January 08, 2020 Rating: 5

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