Saw some posts over at Youtube complaining that the new Arsenal pistol is in .223 and not 5.45x39. Just wanted to remind everybody that we in the U.S. don't want 5.45 pistols for as long as the 7N6 surplus can be imported. The steel core 7.62x39 was banned from importation due to the ATF ruling it as a handgun armor piercing ammo when the OA-93 7.62x39 pistols were made. It just happened to be the about the same time in 1994 when the Chinese imports were shut off, and that was who was importing most of the steel core anyway.
.223/5.56 has an exemption in the law for it to never be considered handgun ammo, that's why you can still buy M855 based ammo.
If 5.45x39 pistols made it into production the ATF would have to make the ruling again and while they could go either way, I think there is a stronger chance that they would make a similar ruling as they did with 7.62x39 steel core. Note that all it took was a medium sized firearm company, Olympic Arms, make around 6 prototype pistols, not even production, in 7.62x39 to move to the ban in 1994.
Eventually the 7N6 will dry up and I believe that the improved versions of 5.45 like 7N22 are already banned from import due to wider ban on more "armor piercing" ammo that is produced after 1996 IIRC. So while we can still get the 7N6 please refrain from the 5.45 pistols?