Saudi Arabia spent $1.4 bln in incentives to boost local military sector in 2021-22

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Saudi Arabia spent $1.4 billion (5.1 billion riyals) in incentives to boost its local military sector over the last two years, the governor of the sector’s general authority Ahmed al-Ohali said on Monday.

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Al-Ohali said that the incentives included $877 million (3.3 billion riyals) which was directed to research and development throughout 2021 and 2022. He added that the remaining $478.6 million (1.8 billion riyals) was distributed to companies in the Kingdom’s military sector, including Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI).

In a video address shared by the official Saudi Press Agency (SPA) on Twitter, al-Ohali said that the Kingdom’s military sector is expected to contribute around $25.2 billion (95 billion) riyals to Saudi Arabia’s GDP by 2030.

SAMI’s chief executive officer Walid Abukhaled said the company will focus on unmanned systems, radars and cybersecurity in coming years.
Both were speaking at a forum in Riyadh on Monday, in the wake of Saudi Arabia’s 2023 budget announcements.

Saudi Vision 2030 was launched by the Kingdom’s Crown Prince and Prime Minister in 2016 in an effort to develop local industries, including the military sector, to diversify the country’s economy away from oil.

“The Kingdom had the third-biggest defense budget in the world, now it is the ninth thanks to spending rationalization,” Abukhaled said.

With Reuters

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