The Vepr was announced in 2003 as the first indigenous Ukrainian (NSAU) assault rifle, designed by the National Space Agency of Ukraine. Note that the Vepr is classed as a sub-machinegun. It is one of several bullpup conversions of the conventional AK-47 design, along with the Polish Kbk wz. 2005 Jantar, the Chinese Norinco Type 86S, the Russian KBP A-91 and OC-14 Groza, the Finnish Valmet M82 and the South African Vektor CR-21.Prior to the development of the Vepr, the personnel of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were equipped mainly with the AKM and AK-74 assault rifle designs, typical of Warsaw Pact countries. More recently, however, as part of ongoing reforms in the Ukrainian Ground Forces, Ukrainian Ministry of Defense has declared intentions to purchase thousands of Veprs by the year 2010.Although the Vepr has been proclaimed as a revolutionary upgrade to the AK-74, it is, in fact, an interesting yet fairly simple modification of the basic AK-74 system in a bullpup design, with the following modifications: The standard gas-operated, rotating-bolt AK-74 mechanism is removed from its furniture and a new butt plate is mounted directly on the rear of the receiver; A polymer cheek rest is fitted to the receiver cover; The trigger and pistol grip are placed in front of the magazine; The cocking handle is removed from the bolt carrier and a new cocking handle arrangement is placed on the left side of the forearm.