The US-Saudi Business Council (USSBC) and the General Authority for Military Industries (GAMI) presented an executive virtual webinar on Wednesday titled “Understanding Saudi Arabia’s Military Industry Growth Strategy.”
Moderated by USSBC President and CEO H. Delano Roosevelt, the webinar provided participating US company representatives with an understanding of the Kingdom’s blossoming defense and security sector.
Ahmad Al-Ohali, governor of GAMI and the event’s featured speaker, highlighted the authority’s role in developing the Kingdom’s military industry sector.
He also provided an overview of the national military industry strategy, the Industrial Participation Program, and the role of research and technology in Saudi Arabia’s defense strategy.
GAMI was established to grow the Kingdom’s military industries sector, in line with the Vision 2030 target of localizing more than 50 percent of defense expenditures by 2030.
GAMI is the regulator, enabler and licensor of the sector, and is responsible for its development and empowerment.
Since the launch of Vision 2030 just five years ago, Saudi Arabia has achieved significant socioeconomic milestones while showing tremendous progress in transforming many key sectors of the economy.
As a result of GAMI’s commitment to its mandate, the military industries sector has rapidly transformed and is now on a steady path to becoming a major contributor to Saudi Arabia’s non-oil gross domestic product.
Al-Ohali emphasized the breadth of opportunities that Saudi Arabia’s defense localization presents to global investors and US defense partners.
Development of the military industries sector requires a whole ecosystem of research and technology institutions, a skilled workforce and other support functions, in addition to local production capabilities, he said.
Roosevelt recalled the long history of cooperation between the US and Saudi Arabia, and predicted that America will continue to play a dominant role in supporting the Kingdom through future strategic relationships.
He said the USSBC will continue facilitating connections between US and Saudi companies, and educating American businesses about the benefits of engaging in the Saudi market.