Author: ARAB NEWSSat, 2018-03-31 12:00ID: 1522476059893713000
JEDDAH: Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman sponsored the signing of a joint venture agreement between the Saudi Arabian Military Industries Company (SAMI) and Boeing at the latters headquarters in Seattle on Saturday, the Saudi state news channel Al-Ekhbariya reported.
The aim of the deal is to localize more than 55 percent of the maintenance and repair of fighter jets and helicopters in the Kingdom. The agreement also included the transfer of technology to integrate weapons on these aircraft and the setting up of a supply chain for spare parts within Saudi Arabia.
The venture is part of efforts to achieve the goals of Saudi Vision 2030.
Commenting on the important milestone, SAMI chief Ahmed Al-Khateeb was quoted in media reports as saying, “Boeing has a long-standing commitment to Saudi Arabia, and is extremely keen on expanding its footprint in the country. Inspired by the vision of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, SAMI is exploring all opportunities to build a strong autonomous military industries ecosystem in the Kingdom.”
Boeing chief Dennis Muilenburg said with this local capability dedicated to sustaining all US-made defense platforms, we can better serve our customers and support the Kingdoms goals of localization and economic growth.
“We deeply appreciate the trust that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in general, and Prince Mohammed bin Salman personally, are placing in Boeing to help deliver Vision 2030 with this new joint venture,” he added.
“Our relationship with the Kingdom dates back more than 70 years, and we look forward to continuing our successful partnership in support of the Kingdoms national security and aerospace industry needs.”
Dr. Andreas Schwer, CEO of SAMI said: “This deal will enable SAMI and Boeing to play a key role in leading and laying the foundational framework for Saudi Arabias defense sector industrialization.”
The joint venture will provide a foundation for future platform sales and for expanding Boeings presence in the Kingdom to support market growth in both the commercial and defense sectors.
Boeings partnership with Saudi Arabia dates back more than 70 years and is growing from strength to strength. It began on Feb. 14, 1945, when US President Franklin D. Roosevelt presented a twin-engine Dakota DC-3 airplane to King Abdul Aziz: This event also marked the birth of commercial air travel in the Kingdom.
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