Armed forces exhibition to help localize Saudi military industry

Maj. Gen. Attiya bin Saleh Al-Maliki speaks during a press conference in Riyadh on Wednesday.
Updated 05 January 2018

Armed forces exhibition to help localize Saudi military industry

RIYADH: In preparation for the Armed Forces Exhibition for Diversification of Local Manufacturing (AFED), which will be held on Feb. 25, Maj. Gen Attiya bin Saleh Al-Malki, spokesman of the exhibition and director general of the department overseeing the localization of manufacturing, explained that the exhibition will have local companies that produce merchandise of high standards with the employment of Saudis, thus creating jobs and helping the economy.
The first AFED exhibition was launched in 2010 in Riyadh exclusively for the armed forces. The second exhibition was held in Dhahran in partnership with Saudi Aramco and Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (SABIC). The third exhibition was held in Riyadh in 2016 with Saudi Aramco, SABIC and many other companies.
During a press conference in Riyadh on Wednesday, Al-Maliki said: “We have made much headway and progress in sector and more is expected in this exhibition.”
When Arab News inquired about the timefame for total localization, Al-Maliki said: “We started in 2013, and since then we have a planned vision and goals. Before Vision 2030, our goals were long term, but now with Vision 2030, we can see ourselves executing our goals of Saudi industrialization of military supplies in a much shorter timeframe.”
The vision and aim of the exhibition is to locally manufacture the arms needed by the country so that the nation’s factories may benefit from sales, rather than buying them from abroad.
Al-Maliki said there would be lectures and workshops during the event. He said it would be a good opportunity for manufacturers and investors to identify business opportunities.
Earlier, Al-Maliki said the exhibition is part of the economic reforms announced by the government, which aims to stimulate investment, support non-oil exports and develop a knowledge-based economy.
The AFED management hopes it will open vast opportunities for job employment and boost the local economy, furthering more factories and companies to upgrade their standards and work toward achieving a higher quality of merchandise that may even be sold on the international market in the future.


Saudi body to help UN devise policies for sustainable living

Updated 13 August 2020

Saudi body to help UN devise policies for sustainable living

  • Saudi Green Building Forum granted accreditation as an observer to UNEP governing body

RIYADH: A professional association from Saudi Arabia will play a key policymaking role at a UN governing body addressing the importance of environmental needs.
Following careful assessment and consideration of the commitments and engagements of the Saudi Green Building Forum (SGBF), the nonprofit organization has been granted accreditation as an observer at the governing body of the UN Environment Program (UNEP). SGBF will play a role as an observer at all public meetings and sessions of the UNEP and its subsidiary organs.
Speaking to Arab News, Faisal Al-Fadl, founder of the nonprofit organization, said that the forum’s mission has been developing for the past 10 years and this accreditation was considered an important step in strengthening the role of Saudi civil society institutions, locally and internationally. This was in line with Vision 2030, which has not only played an integral role in the NGO’s mission but also paved the way for the Kingdom’s people to go the extra mile in building an advanced and resilient society.
SGBF was initiated in 2010 and established in 2014. In 2017, it became the first professional body from Saudi Arabia in consultative status with the UN.
“The Saudi Forum was an advocacy group with an honest voice to bridge the gap; through UNEP we now have the tools to become the policymakers,” Al-Fadl said. It is a challenge that the group founder says will be met by providing communities with the proper tools to implement commitments.
As the observing body on the environmental framework at the UNEP, SGBF’s role will include promoting its concepts and goals to be reflected within the community of change. For change to happen, people of a community at a grassroots level who have committed to the preservation of moral codes of conduct are key to changing mentality and behavior to guarantee a future for the next generations, Al-Fadl said.
“As an open platform, our role is being the honest voice of bridging the gap. Economic and social progress accompanied by environmental degradation and pandemics are endangering the very systems on which our future development and our survival depends,” he said.
SGBF represents the Kingdom and its call to communities, stakeholders, and policymakers to build on the principles of volunteering, advocacy and sustainable development.
For the NGO, their next step is increasing the engagement of civil society, finding solutions to the problem of volunteer integration in societies, and to prioritize and address social challenges for women, youth and the elderly, calling on member states to increase their role in building and developing practices that minimize the negative impact on the planet.
Al-Fadl added that protecting the planet and building resilience was not easy. Without bolstering local action, including volunteers to accelerate the implementation, it would be a long time until goals were met and result seen, he said.
“UN member countries have the responsibility in confronting the human crisis of inestimable proportions, which impose its heaviest tolls on the supply chain for those marginalized and
most vulnerable in cities and communities around the world,” Al-Fadl said.