Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Public Investment Fund (PIF), and Lockheed Martin have signed a strategic agreement to form a joint venture to enhance Saudi Arabia’s domestic defence and security capabilities and supporting the industrialisation and economic development objectives of Saudi Vision 2030.
The agreement was signed in Abu Dhabi, UAE, on the sidelines of the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) by Eng Walid Abukhaled, CEO of SAMI, and Timothy Cahill, Senior Vice President, Lockheed Martin International.
The joint venture, in which SAMI will have a 51-per cent shareholding and Lockheed Martin will hold the remaining stakes, is aimed at developing localisation capabilities through the transfer of technology (ToT) and knowledge (ToK) and training of Saudi nationals to manufacture products and provide services to the kingdom’s armed forces.
Eng Abukhaled, CEO of SAMI, said: “In keeping with the objectives of the Saudi Vision 2030 program, SAMI has been exploring avenues to help build a sustainable, self-sufficient military industries sector in the Kingdom, and our strong and enduring partnership with Lockheed Martin underpins our commitment. The agreement to establish a new joint venture represents a major step forward to realizing our ambitious goals, and we look forward to tremendous outcomes in the near future. It also supports PIF’s efforts through SAMI in localising cutting-edge technology and knowledge, as well as building strategic economic partnerships.”
Timothy Cahill, Senior Vice President, Lockheed Martin International, said: “Today marks a major milestone in our strategic relationship with SAMI and comes as part of our longstanding commitment to supporting Saudi Arabia’s industrialization and economic development plans. This agreement is in line with Lockheed Martin’s strategy to expand its partnership with the Kingdom by providing reliable defense and security solutions that will support security and prosperity for decades to come.”
The SAMI-Lockheed Martin Joint Venture will develop capabilities in manufacturing technology, software technology, and systems integration, as well as the production, maintenance, and repair of rotary and fixed-wing aircraft, and missile defence systems, as well as naval and land systems.
The Bethesda, Maryland-headquartered global security and aerospace company Lockheed Martin has had a presence in Saudi Arabia since 1965, with the first delivery of the C-130 Hercules military transport aircraft. Since then, the company has continued to assist Saudi Arabia in integrated air and missile defense systems, tactical and rotary-wing technologies, maritime systems, and satellite communications. Lockheed Martin’s presence is bolstered by training initiatives that encourage and train the next generation of Saudi talent, ensuring the sustainability of the aerospace and defense industry and supporting the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 objectives. - TradeArabia News Service