After Saudi arms deal, defense shares fly
- Author: Zachary Reyes May 24, 2017,
May 24, 2017, 16:23
Now government officials and defense firms are scrambling to understand what's actually included in the package, what's new about it, and what comes next. Financial terms of those specific deals were not disclosed. Obama previously set the record for most profligate weapons deal with the Saudis at $115 billion. The deal will include sales of products related to border security and counterterrorism, maritime and coastal security, air force modernization, air and missile defense as well as cybersecurity and communications upgrades.
Subscribe to the Defense One daily.
And White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer lauded the deal in a tweet as the "largest single arms deal in US history". "Additionally, it bolsters the Kingdom's ability to provide for its own security and continue contributing to counterterrorism operations across the region, reducing the burden on US military forces".
May 23-Tentative agreements with Saudi Arabia calling for more Sikorsky helicopters could be good news for CT where the aircraft are manufactured, but details are not yet available and provisions that tilt manufacturing or job creation to the kingdom will likely meet resistance in Congress.
The deal can be expected to support jobs in both the seller and buyer nations. Lockheed Martin's portion of the big sale to the Saudi Arabian government will total (at least) $28 billion, which is enough to cover the company's revenues for more than half a year.
At the forum, Saudi ministers and CEOs from major U.S. companies met to discuss expanding business between the two countries. In the past, Middle Eastern allies simply wanted American-made weapons. They stand to profit the most from the agreement. Saudi has touted Vision 2030, a plan that calls for making half of the kingdom's weapons locally.
The forum was organized to coincide with U.S.
President Trump has an attractive return gift for the US defense contractors from his inaugural foreign trip.
According to Rep. Gabbard, Saudi Arabia is the "world's largest sponsor and propagator of the extremist Wahhabi Salafist ideology" that she says "fuels terrorist groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda". "These programs will positively impact Saudi and US economies including job creation", its statement said. The kingdom signed tentative agreements that the Trump administration said could be worth $110 billion, including fighter jets, ships and missiles, as well as energy technology, health-care expertise, job training and a $40 billion joint infrastructure investment fund.