Saudi aviation companies join forces to boost Kingdom’s defense capabilities

Updated 14 November 2017

Saudi aviation companies join forces to boost Kingdom’s defense capabilities

DUBAI: Several Saudi aviation companies have formed an alliance to manufacture airplanes in the Kingdom. The companies signed a memorandum of understanding on the sidelines of the Dubai Airshow on Monday morning.
The initiative was launched by TAQNIA Aeronautics, a subsidiary of the Saudi Technology Development and Investment Co. (TAQNIA), and fits with the aims of Vision 2030 to nationalize the aviation industry and raise domestic industrial output by 50 percent.
The memorandum was signed by the CEOs of TAQNIA Aeronautics, TAQNIA Defense and Security Technologies, Middle East propulsion Co., the Al-Salam Aerospace Industries, the Advanced Electronics Co., the Advanced Arabian Simulation Co., the Saudia Aerospace Engineering Industries, the Aircraft Accessories and Components Co., and the Saudi Rotorcraft Support Co.
The memorandum signals the alliance’s intent to establish three production lines for airplanes in the Kingdom to manufacture, test, supply and maintain three types of aircraft: The Ukrainian Antonov AN-132, the multipurpose American Black Hawk helicopter and drones.
The agreement includes manufacturing airframes and installing and testing high-tech defense technology.
The CEO of TAQNIA Aeronautics, Ali bin Mohammed Al-Ghamdi, a retired major general, said the alliance was open to all qualified Saudi companies in the aviation industry, in a bid to achieve integration, not to create competition, and in order to ensure high profits in the medium to long term.
Abdullah Al-Omary, CEO of the Middle East Propulsion Co., said it is the only company in the Kingdom that maintains and manufactures military aircraft engines. He added that his company has served the Saudi Royal Air Force for over 16 years, and “Saudi Arabia owns 82 percent of the company.”
Hamad Al-Yousefi, CEO of TAQNIA Defense and Security Technologies, said that his company looks forward to cooperating with TAQNIA Aeronautics on the alliance’s projects.
Saudia Aerospace Engineering Industries CEO Ali bin Abdullah Al-Ashban said that the agreement will include the limited manufacturing of spare parts for air-defense aircraft and other aircraft used to support military operations “in order to nationalize this industry and accommodate the increasing demand for it.”


Lead roles for Saudi stars as Okaz Nights concerts begin

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Updated 18 min 12 sec ago

Lead roles for Saudi stars as Okaz Nights concerts begin

  • Abadi Al-Johar and Dalia Mubarak shine in wonderful musical evening

TAIF: The Okaz Nights series of concerts began with a wonderful evening featuring Saudi stars Abadi Al-Johar and Dalia Mubarak at the Okaz Main Theater, which has been given a new look.

The concerts are part of Taif Season, which is presenting events throughout August. The concert with Al-Johar and Mubarak, which sold out quickly, was well received by the audience of more than 2,500.

The evening began at 9.30 p.m. with a collection of new and old songs from Mubarak, supported by 27 musicians. Al-Johar then greeted her with beautiful and famous songs.

Emirati singer Hussain Al-Jasmi also performed at the theater, which will host Syrian musical artist Asala Nasri on Aug. 28 and Ahlam Al-Shamsi on Aug. 30.