‘Saudi defense sector to contribute $61.6bn to GDP by 2020’

Saudi Arabia announced a military budget of SR191 billion in 2019. (
Updated 18 March 2019
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‘Saudi defense sector to contribute $61.6bn to GDP by 2020’

  • 2.52 million private sector jobs would be generated in public administration and defense by 2028
  • Cybersecurity was one of the fastest growing segments in the sector

RIYADH: The Saudi defense industry will experience strong growth in the next decade, according to a report.

The report titled “Defense, Security, and Aerospace,” which was published by the US-Saudi Arabian Business Council (USSABC), said the sector was expected to contribute SR231.27 billion ($61.6 billion) to the national gross domestic product by 2020 and that 2.52 million private sector jobs would be generated in public administration and defense by 2028.

The report also said cybersecurity was one of the fastest growing segments in the sector.

“Historically, the Saudi defense sector has proven lucrative for foreign defense contractors given that the country is among the leading arms importers with growing domestic capabilities,” Abdullah Jum’ah, co-chair of the USSABC and former CEO of Saudi Aramco, told Arab News on Monday.

“In the coming years, we expect the Kingdom to progress toward the localization objectives of the Vision 2030 reform plan while still expanding opportunities for the private sector across training services, cybersecurity, and command and control segments,” he added.

US firms have supplied the largest number of defense articles to the Saudi armed forces, the report said.

Saudi Arabia announced a military budget of SR191 billion in 2019, the report said, with defense and military accounting for 17.3 percent of the Kingdom’s total SR1.11 trillion spending plans.

The report is one in a series of in-depth publications from USSABC that highlights new economic trends and opportunities in Saudi Arabia.

Previous reports have focused on industries of strategic growth for the Kingdom such as healthcare, infrastructure development, and labor localization.


Saudi Arabia's King Salman offers $1m to International Civil Aviation Organization

Updated 17 June 2019
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Saudi Arabia's King Salman offers $1m to International Civil Aviation Organization

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has provided $1 million to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the Saudi Press Agency reported Monday.

The announcement came as part of the “Kingdom’s efforts in supporting international organizations and bodies and the leadership’s keenness to play an important role in the most important international and regional organizations,” SPA said.

The aid will go towards supporting ICAO’s No Country Left Behind (NCLB) initiative, which aims to assist developing countries in applying the standards and recommended methods for the safety and security of civil aviation.

The aid will also contribute to the costs of translating the organization’s documents and publications into Arabic.

The President of the Kingdom’s General Authority for Civil Aviation (GACA), Abdulhadi bin Ahmed Al-Mansouri thanked King Salman for his support to the aviation sector locally, regionally and globally, 

He said: “this contributes to the development of the aviation industry and to improve the safety and security of civil aviation in developing countries, least developed countries and island states.

The $1 million of financial assistance is an extension of the Kingdom's previous financial support in 2016 which “ the level of safety and security of civil aviation in the Middle East and Africa," Al-Mansouri said.

Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu, the ICAO’s president, thanked the king for the support.