Saudi-US arms deal includes plans for 150 Lockheed Martin Black Hawk helicopters

A US-Saudi arms deal to be signed on Saturday includes a pledge to assemble 150 Lockheed Martin Blackhawk helicopters in Saudi Arabia. (File photo: Reuters)
Updated 21 May 2017
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Saudi-US arms deal includes plans for 150 Lockheed Martin Black Hawk helicopters

RIYADH: A series of US-Saudi arms deals announced on Saturday includes a pledge to assemble 150 Lockheed Martin Black Hawk helicopters in the Kingdom, an official statement said.
The $6 billion deal for Black Hawks is expected to result in about 450 jobs in Saudi Arabia, the statement said.
The letter of intent agreement between Lockheed Martin and Taqnia was among several deals announced in Riyadh on Saturday during the Saudi-US CEO Forum.
It comes as part of a wider potential deal with the US firm. Lockheed Martin said that Saudi Arabia has expressed its intent to procure more than $28 billion worth of integrated air and missile defense, combat ship, tactical aircraft and rotary wing technologies and programs.
“At Lockheed Martin, we are proud to be part of this historic announcement that will strengthen the relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia,” said Marillyn Hewson, Lockheed Martin chairman, president and CEO. 
“We are especially proud of how our broad portfolio of advanced global security products and technologies will enhance national security in Saudi Arabia, strengthen the cause of peace in the region, and provide the foundation for job creation and economic prosperity in the US and in the Kingdom. These agreements will directly contribute to His Majesty’s Vision 2030 by opening the door for thousands of highly skilled jobs in new economic sectors.”
Another memorandum of intent covers government-to-government sales of Lockheed Martin programs to include integrated error and missile defense systems, multi-mission surface combatant ships, radar systems, surveillance systems, tactical aircraft and rotary wing programs, Lockheed Martin said.
Lockheed Martin and Saudi Arabian Military Industries also formed a memorandum of understanding to work together to build defense capabilities in Saudi Arabia to support Vision 2030 and provide for localization efforts.
“Once fully realized, the programs in this announcement will support more than 18,000 highly skilled jobs in the US and thousands of jobs in Saudi Arabia as part of maintaining and modernizing these platforms over the next 30 years,” the statement said.
“These programs help the Saudi government realize its Vision 2030 objective of building its domestic technology capabilities and skilled workforce.”


Events celebrating Saudi Souq Okaz festival kick off on Wednesday

Events are planned across the country to accompany the Souq Okaz festival. (AFP)
Updated 39 min 26 sec ago
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Events celebrating Saudi Souq Okaz festival kick off on Wednesday

  • Makkah will host a show creatively presenting the historical convoys of trade souqs
  • Riyadh and the Eastern Province will be hosting heritage and cultural events such as a show that presents the story of buying and selling in Souq Okaz and encourages people to visit the souq’s events

JEDDAH: Events accompanying Souq Okaz that promote the market and invite people to visit its cultural and heritage activities will kick off on Wednesday, under the patronage of King Salman. The Souq is organized by the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) and will run June 27 to July 13.

Makkah will host the event of “The Historical Convoys of Thi Al-Mejna and Thi Al-Mijaz Souqs,” a show creatively presenting the historical convoys of trade souqs. These convoys show the method traders adopted to beat travel exhaustion and entertain themselves as they would sing about Souq Okaz and invite people to visit it.

Madinah will host the event “Let’s go to Souq Okaz,” which will encourage people to attend the cultural and heritage events. This event includes activities such as folk shows and interactive, innovative and heritage competitions.

Jeddah will host several cultural seminars focusing on the history of the souq as well as poetry readings and a theatrical show that represents the story of buying and selling in Souq Okaz.

Riyadh and the Eastern Province will be hosting heritage and cultural events such as a show that presents the story of buying and selling in Souq Okaz and encourages people to visit the souq’s events.

Taif will host “Souq Okaz for Performance Arts,” an event that includes heritage and cultural performance activities that reflect the souq’s identity in Al-Hada, Shifa and Ar-Rudaf Park. 

The events accompanying the souq this year will be launched on Friday in Al-Baha and many archaeological sites in the provinces of Al-Mikhwat, Al-Qura and Al-Mandaq.

The events include the camel convoy, horse shows, traditional folk and dancing shows, artifacts, Saudi traditional dishes and the introduction of some popular traditional and historical souqs in the regions.