Saudi and Chinese companies sign deals to manufacture military drones in the Kingdom


Riyadh — Saudi and Chinese companies signed deals to design and manufacture military drones inside the Kingdom, during the World Defense Show in Riyadh which took place between March 6-9.

According to Defense News, Saudi Arabia’s Advanced Communications and Electronics Systems (ACES) signed an agreement with China Electronics Technology Group Corp (CETC). The joint venture which is called as ‘Aerial Solutions’ will establish a research and development center inside the Kingdom with a sophisticated team to manufacture different types of UAV systems, including communications, flight-control, camera, radar and wireless-detection systems.

Aerial Solutions will also develop electric-powered vertical-takeoff-and-landing drones, anti-drone solutions, analytics, helicopter products and radar systems.

This joint venture will also focus on protecting infrastructure and localizing the technological innovation through scientific research, manufacturing and training the Saudi engineers. According to ACES, this move is in line with Vision 2030, to prioritize the Saudi workforce.

Back in 2017, Saudi Arabia ordered Chinese-made Wing Loong II drones, which according to Chinese media Xinhua was the country’s largest-ever arms export.

CETC participated in the World Defense Show 2022 along with other Chinese firms like China North Industries Group Corp. Ltd. (NORINCO), China National Aero-Technology Import and Export Corp. (CATIC), Star Vision, China Aerospace Long March International Trading Co. (ALIT).

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