Saudi Arabia's Public Investment fund (PIF) announced the establishment of a new state owned military industries company on Wednesday, Arab News reported.
Saudi officials hope that the company, launched under the kingdom's Vision 2030 and named Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI), will become one of the world's top twenty five defense companies within a decade.
“While the kingdom is one of the world’s top five spenders on security and defense overall, only around 2 percent of our military procurement is domestic,” Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said in a statement, adding that with SAMI's launch, 50 percent of Saudi Arabia’s military procurement spending will be localized.
According to Arab News, SAMI will manufacture products and provide services across four business units including air systems, land systems, weapons/missiles, and defense electronics.
The company is set to directly contribute around SR14 billion ($3.7 billion) to the kingdom’s GDP, invest over SR6 billion ($1.5 billion) in research, and create over 40,000 jobs by 2030.
Plans for the latest venture also include partnerships with several universities, providing students with "apprenticeships and careers in cutting edge technologies, which were previously unavailable in the kingdom."
A vision for the future
SAMI, is the latest project launched under Vision 2030, which is slowly transforming and revolutionizing various aspects of the kingdom's social, economic and political landscapes.
The ambitious blueprint aims to fight unemployment, develop non-oil industries, support small and medium enterprises, and create a broader investment base in Saudi Arabia.
Under it, the newly launched national military defense company will contribute to diversifying the economy and strengthening the country's national security.