A Saudi official affirmed that the kingdom is moving forward with reinforcing the military industrial content, providing spare parts to achieve self-sufficiency and exporting to global markets amid expectations of a sector growth ranging between 1 and 2 percent in 2018.
General Department for Local Manufacturing Support General Director Engineer Atiyah al-Maleki told Asharq Al-Awsat that the 2018 Armed Forces Exhibition for Diversity of Requirements and Capabilities (AFED) will present 46,000 categories that provide partnership opportunities between the public and private sectors.
He added that 18 government and private bodies and 48 international companies will present their products at AFED at the Riyadh International Convention and Exhibition Center from February 25 to March 3.
He asserted that the kingdom is committed to enhancing the local content. He lauded the importance of the private sector participation in nationalization and boosting capabilities, stressing that the Ministry of Defense is committed to using private sector products and reinforcing the local factories' work.
Engineer Osama al-Zamil, chairman of Industrial Committee of Riyadh Chamber, expected the Saudi military sector to grow up to 1-2 percent in 2018, adding that the chamber’s meeting on Thursday with the Ministry of Defense endorsed this approach.
The meeting aims at launching an initiative to reinforce partnership between the Ministry of Defense and the Saudi industrial sector in order to provide military spare parts, stated Zamil.
It was also a chance to evaluate the overall condition and to showcase achievements made in the field of building local capabilities in military manufacturing in both the public and private sectors.
Zamil declared that the meeting resulted in launching an initiative of a strategic partnership chamber in cooperation with the Ministry of Defense and AFED to form a team from the private sector that would determine capabilities and provide information.