يحيى التليدي
كاتب وباحث سياسي
Yahya Al Talidi
Writer and Political Researcher

The strategic importance of localizing Gulf military industries

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For years, the Arab Gulf states have been working to develop military industries and achieve an ambitious level of military industrialization, and recently some of them have adopted an ambitious vision to localize military technology to contribute to the development of their economies, and achieve superiority in the military balance that ensures the security and safety of the region, and represents a strong deterrent to any aggressor who thinks of threatening its security and stability.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE may be the most prominent Gulf countries that have announced their future strategic goals in localizing military industries.

Within the framework of Vision 2030, Riyadh aims to localize military industries to reach the strategic goal of manufacturing 50% of its military equipment by 2030.

The vision enables openness to the outside world through the formation of partnerships with international institutions to localize military industries.

For its part, Abu Dhabi is pursuing a program to develop the local defense industries from 10% to 30% by 2030, and it already has a well-developed defense industry and a diversified economy.

This industry revolves around developing quality solutions that can be mastered by the UAE’s armed forces and attracting foreign markets concerned with specialized goods such as naval vessels and advanced drones.

Every industry has its challenges, localization of technology and the lack of necessary technical capabilities and expertise represent the most important challenges faced by the military industry in the Arab Gulf states.

To solve this problem, there are requirements that decision-makers in the Arab Gulf states must take into consideration:

1. Stimulating military-industrial cooperation between the Gulf states by developing a common base for maintenance, repair, integrated services, and production infrastructure, working to provide an infrastructure capable of absorbing armament technology, and preparing legislation to control acquisition and trading procedures in a manner that protects Gulf national security and creates an attractive and safe environment for investment by Big companies.

2. Establishing the necessary research and development centers and exchanging experiences with the leading countries in the military industries.

3. Having a clearer and more precise strategic and tactical goal for military industrialization, as the world is moving towards high technology, and requires a diversified approach for technology transfer, developing local research and development capabilities, and establishing more dynamic links between defense industries and scientific institutions such as universities, institutes, scientific complexes, and research centers.

Using a degree of rationality and constructive cooperation, the Gulf States can succeed in achieving their defense and security goals, and military industrialization can, in turn, contribute to diversifying their economies, promoting growth, and most importantly improving their defense and self-security capabilities so that they can rely on themselves in providing security in the Arabian Gulf.

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