Saudi Arabia is buying the Russian S-400 air defence system along with other military hardware under an MoU signed with Rosboronexport.
Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI) — the government-owned entity created in May —announced on 5th October that Saudi Arabia is buying the Russian S-400 air defence system along with other military hardware under an MoU signed with Rosboronexport.
The country became the first Middle East customer for the U.S. Patriot missile system back in 1991. It is one of two countries in the region, along with the UAE, to have acquired the latest PAC-3 version of the system.
According to SAMI, the MoU with Rosboronexport includes the transfer of technology for the local production of the Kornet-EM anti-tank guided missile (ATGM) system, the TOS-1A advanced multiple rocket launcher and AGS-30 automatic grenade launchers with grenades. In addition, the parties will cooperate in setting a plan to localize the manufacturing and sustainment of parts of the S-400 air defense system.
SAMI says that the agreements also include educational and training programs for Saudi nationals to ensure the sustainability and development of the military industries sector in Saudi Arabia.
The agreement involves the transfer of cutting edge technologies that will act as a catalyst for localizing 50% of the Kingdom's military spending as targeted by Vision 2030. One of the Vision 2030 goals is to ensure that 50 % of Saudi Arabia’s military procurement spending remains in-country, compared with just 2 % now.