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Saudi Arabia to Invest Over $20 Bln in Military Industry in Next Decade

Saudi Arabia to Invest Over $20 Bln in Military Industry in Next Decade

Sunday, 21 February, 2021 - 10:15
Governor of the Saudi General Authority for Military Industries (GAMI) Ahmed bin Abdulaziz Al-Ohali participates at a defense conference in Abu Dhabi. (Asharq Al-Awsat)

Saudi Arabia will invest more than $20 billion in its domestic military industry over the next decade as part of aggressive plans to boost local military spending, the head of the Kingdom’s military industry regulator said on Saturday.

The Kingdom wants to develop and manufacture more weapons and military systems domestically, aiming to spend 50% of the military budget locally by 2030.

“The government has put a plan that we will be investing in excess of $20 billion in the military industry in Saudi Arabia over the next decade and equal amounts on research and development,” Governor of the General Authority for Military Industries (GAMI) Ahmed bin Abdulaziz Al-Ohali told a defense conference in Abu Dhabi.

He also said the Kingdom plans to increase military research and development (R&D) spending from 0.2% to around 4% of armaments expenditure by 2030.

“The Saudi defense sector has continued to operate effectively throughout the pandemic, which indicates the effectiveness and flexibility of supply chains, in addition to stock-keeping strategies and plans,” Al-Ohali noted, adding that the Kingdom will continue to focus on working both independently and with allies.

“The coronavirus crisis has pushed us towards the future by accelerating the transition to digitization in supply chain management,” he added.

Abu Dhabi launched the 15th edition of the International Defense Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) and the Naval Defense and Maritime Security Exhibition (NAVDEX).

Over 900 exhibitors from 59 nations are expected to take part through 35 national pavilions.

IDEX and NAVEX 2021 showcase the latest developments in the defense sector. They will also highlight the latest in military technology, innovative equipment and the development of the national defense sector.

Additionally, the exhibitions will allow the forging of new strategic relationships between attending entities and major international companies specialized in these sectors.

The twin event will be held from February 21-25.

The Saudi investment ministry, along with other Saudi bodies and firms will be taking part under the slogan “Invest in Saudi Arabia”.

GAMI and 12 other major Saudi companies specializing in the military and security will introduce developments in Saudi military technology at the event.

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