NIMR development began in the late 1990s and production began in 2005. NIMR was designed with the help of Russian automotive company GAZ, which also helped set up the manufacturing operation and supplies some of the components. The UAE armed forces bought 1,200 NIMR vehicles over the last two years and most are in service. The new Libyan armed forces, as well as Lebanon, Tunisia, and Algeria, have ordered or are evaluating the vehicle.
The UAE also ordered 15,000 of the new CAR 816 assault rifle from a UAE company. This is another M-16 clone and has all the latest features and accessories.
NIMR and CAR 816 are part of an effort by oil-rich Arab countries to develop their economies and not just be dependent on exporting oil and gas. This is difficult because most Arab countries, especially the oil-rich Gulf states, don’t have much industrial infrastructure or a population with the motivation or skills to create one.