Saudi Arabia launches national company for arms manufacturing

In Politics

Saudi Gazette
The state-owned Saudi Public Investment Fund (PIF) announced the launch of a national state company for arms manufacturing that will also create thousands of jobs in the Kingdom.

The new company, the Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI), is part of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030, the sovereign wealth fund PIF said in a statement.

The Vision 2030 is a plan to reduce Saudi Arabia’s reliance on oil and to diversify its income.

PIF said the new company is expected to create more than 40,000 jobs — mostly in the hi-tech and engineering sectors — and more than 30,000 indirect opportunities as well as the creation of hundreds of small and medium size companies.

To fulfill the agenda of this company, Saudis will be trained, it added. By partnering with universities, SAMI will provide students with apprenticeships and careers in cutting edge technologies which were previously unavailable in the Kingdom.

Deputy Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, second deputy premier and minister of defense, said the new company will be producing not just arms but armored vehicles and will work to repair and maintain planes or jets.

He also said the new company will enter partnership with big firms in the field.

The new company will ‘repair fixed-wing aircraft’ and ‘manufacture unmanned air vehicles.’

The company will launch its products and services in four vital areas: Air systems; ground systems; arms and ammunitions and missiles; and defense electronics.

The company’s strategic objective is to reach among the top 25 global military industrial giants by 2030, making Saudi Arabia a strong partner in the global military industry. The company’s direct contribution to the Kingdom’s gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to exceed SR14 billion.

The Deputy Crown Prince said that the new company will enable the Kingdom to nationalize 50 percent of the government’s military spending by 2030.

He said the company will positively impact the Kingdom’s domestic production and the balance of its payments as it will lead the military industries to increase the local content, besides increasing exports and bringing foreign investments into the Kingdom by entering into joint ventures with the global military companies.

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