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Lockheed Martin partners with Wahaj for laser-guided bomb production in KSA

RIYADH: American defense giant Lockheed Martin signed a teaming agreement on Wednesday with Wahaj to develop Saudi Arabia’s capability to co-manufacture the tailkits for Paveway II Plus Laser-Guided Bombs (LGBs).
The agreement was signed at the Armed Forces Exhibition for Diversity of Requirements and Capabilities (AFED 2018) annual conference at the Riyadh International Convention and Exhibition Center.
Established in 2013, Riyadh-based precision-engineering company Wahaj is an affiliate of the Saudi International Petrochemical Co. (Sipchem). It serves the aerospace, defense, power, and oil and gas industries.
“Today marks an important day for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, as we make progress in the localization essential to a strong defense industry. The team at Wahaj look forward to securing the best local talent to help us meet the capacity of future Paveway II Plus LGB manufacturing,” Abdulrahman A. Al-Saif, chairman of Wahaj, said in a statement.
The laser-guided bombs, the release explained, use “an advanced guidance system to convert conventional gravity bombs into precision-guided munitions.”
Lockheed Martin’s Paveway II Plus LGBs are cleared for use on aircraft authorized to carry and release LGBs, including Saudi Arabia’s F-15s, F-16s and Tornados.
Alan Chinoda, the chief executive of Lockheed’s Saudi business, said: “We are dedicated to supporting the Kingdom’s national security objectives defined in Vision 2030 development plan.”
“By the time production ramps to full operational capability, we envision localization to be upwards of 70 percent,” he said.

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