General Electric (NYSE: GE) stated on Monday that it has made a series of deals with Saudi Arabia amounting to more than $1.4 billion as part of the Middle Eastern country’s ambitious plan to minimize its dependence on crude oil.
According to the conglomerate, projects worth $1 billion would be executed with the Saudi Arabian Industrial Investments Co., which was established in 2014 by royal order to ramp up the nation’s manufacturing industry.
An extra $400 million would be allocated for creating a forging-and-casting manufacturing facility for Saudi Arabia’s marine and energy industry. General Electric hopes that the facility will start operating by 2020 and provide about 2,000 jobs.
According to GE, there is a chance that there will be another$2 billion worth of projects coming on line in the future.
The Chairman and Chief Executive of the conglomerate Mr. Jeffrey Immelt stated that the project reflected that the company intends to grow its long-time presence in Saudi Arabia in “a new and visionary way.”
In a statement, the GE CEO and Chairman said, “Together, we will create quality jobs for Saudi youth, … boost exports, enhance economic competitiveness and support the vision and aspirations of Saudi Arabia.”
This recent deal comes as part of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 plan to reduce its dependence on crude oil production.
General Electric is also creating heavy duty gas turbines for Saudi Electricity Company. This is actually part of the contract from Saudi Electricity Company for the EPC contract for gas turbine services for Waad Al-Shamal combined cycle power plant.
According to GE Oil & Gas Saudi Arabia CEO Zaher Ibrahim, “The localized manufacturing will also help build a local talent pool of Saudi professionals and develop more local suppliers and SMEs.”
All of the 12 gas compression trains, including the extremely efficient aeroderivative turbines, are created at GEMTEC. GEMTEC now has more than 500 employees—70 percent of which are Saudi technical professionals. Within the past 2 years, GEMTEX has also developed as a strong supporter of the SME sector of Saudi.
Back in the year 2014, 12 percent of the components for the gas turbines being created at GEMTEC were supplied by local SMEs. These components included battery compartments, base plates, small machine parts, as well as batteries.
During the previous year, Saudi SMEs’ contribution to GEMTEC edged up to 21 percent with a much wider spectrum of ‘Made in Saudi’ products. These products include exhaust stacks, inlet ducts, as well as control compartments.
The conglomerate’s VP of Strategic Accounts for Saudi Arabia Mazin Albahkali pointed out: “We are committed to strengthening localized manufacturing of high-end industrial equipment in the Kingdom. It supports the goals of the Saudi Vision 2030 to build the Kingdom’s manufacturing capabilities, create new jobs and support SMEs,”
“The in-country value generated through the localized manufacturing, led by Saudi professionals, is long-term and sets the strong foundation for more manufacturing initiatives by GE in the Kingdom,” he further added.
Saudi Arabia accounts for the largest General Electric workforce in the Middle East, with 3 offices, 7 facilities, and more than 2,000 employees in the Aviation, Oil & Gas, Power, Healthcare, and Transportation segments.