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| 17 May, 2017

Saudi Arabia launches military industries company - state TV

FILE IMAGE: Saudi Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman waves as he meets with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, April 11, 2017.

FILE IMAGE: Saudi Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman waves as he meets with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, April 11, 2017.

REUTERS/

Saudi Arabia announced the launch of a Saudi Company for Military Industries aimed at providing up to 50,000 jobs by 2030



DUBAI, May 18 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia on Wednesday announced the launch of a Saudi Company for Military Industries aimed at providing up to 50,000 jobs by 2030, state-owned Ekhbariya TV reported.

"The company's contribution to the kingdom's gross domestic product is expected to reach more than 14 billion riyals ($3.7 billion) by 2030, Ekhbariya added in a news flash.

Saudi Arabia is one of the world's largest buyers of foreign arms, and the kingdom, like other Gulf states, has for decades recycled a major part of its oil wealth back into Western economies via arms purchases and investments.

But last year the powerful deputy crown prince and defence minister, Prince Mohammed bin Salman, launched his Vision 2030 reform scheme to boost jobs and revenue to prepare for a future with lower oil income.

"We aim to make 50 percent of government military spending domestic by 2030," Ekhbariya quoted the prince as saying in a series of news flashes.

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"The Company for Military Industries will contribute toward attracting foreign investment to the kingdom ... the company will enter into joint ventures with major military industrial companies," he was also quoted as saying.

Additionally, the company will work in repair and maintenance of planes as well as in the manufacture of unmanned aircraft, he added.

(Reporting By Mostafa Hashem and Noah Browning; Editing by Kevin Liffey) ((noah.browning@thomsonreuters.com;))