Airbus SE has entered into a lucrative investment agreement surpassing 25 billion riyals ($6.7 billion) to manufacture helicopters for both military and civilian purposes in Saudi Arabia, partnering with a domestic defense company.
According to Scopa CEO Fawaz Alakeel, Airbus and Scopa have reached an agreement to establish a helicopter production facility in Saudi Arabia. Construction of the plant is scheduled to commence in the near future, and it is anticipated that the facility will be capable of manufacturing approximately 100 military and commercial helicopters by the conclusion of the next decade.
Why it matters
Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman aims to diversify Saudi Arabia's economy by bolstering the domestic defense industry. By 2030, he plans to allocate 50% of the kingdom's military spending locally. The forthcoming Airbus helicopter facility in Saudi Arabia, as noted by Alakeel, could serve as a platform for future exports to other Middle Eastern countries.