Military

Boeing, Lockheed Martin Bag Helo Business During Trump’s Visit to Saudi Arabia

By S.L. Fuller | May 22, 2017
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A CH-47F Chinook helicopter assigned to 3rd General Support Aviation Battalion, 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade maneuvers with a sling loaded M1114 Up-Armored Humvee from 1st Battalion, 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team during a sling load training event at Saunders pick-up zone on Fort Bragg, N.C., April 4. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Steven Galimore)

A Boeing CH-47F Chinook maneuvers with a sling loaded M1114 Up-Armored Humvee from 1st Battalion, 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team . U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Steven Galimore

Saudia Arabia has signed on for Boeing and Lockheed Martin airframes, support and services, the manufacturers said.

Thanks to the new business deals, Boeing plans to sell CH-47s and associated supported services and guided weapon systems to Saudi Arabia. An agreement was also signed for a commercial registration certification for the Saudi Rotorcraft Support Company, which is a new joint venture between Boeing, Alsalam Aerospace Industries and Saudi Aerospace Engineering Industries. Bases in Riyadh and Jeddah would support military and commercial helicopters. Deals for sustainment services for a range of military platforms intent to order other fixed-wing aircraft were included as well.

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“These announcements reaffirm our commitment to the economic growth, prosperity and national security of both Saudi Arabia and the United States, helping to create or sustain thousands of jobs in our two countries,” said Dennis Muilenburg, Boeing's chairman, president and CEO. “Our decades-long partnership with the Kingdom began in 1945 when President Roosevelt presented a DC-3 to King Abdul Aziz Al Saud, launching commercial air travel in the region. We welcome the opportunity to continue that support. I appreciate the efforts of King Salman, President Trump and his administration to support American manufacturers as we seek to grow at home and around the world.”

Lockheed Martin received several memorandums and letters for defense deals. The U.S. and Saudi Arabia could pursue foreign military sales of rotary wing programs, among other items, and a letter of intent was signed for a joint venture for Black Hawks. Up to 150 S-70s could undergo final assembly and completion for the Saudi government. This would create jobs in both the U.S. and Saudi Arabia.

Both companies' deals would contribute to His Majesty's Vision 2030, which aims to build domestic technology capabilities in Saudi Arabia through job creation and development of a highly skilled workforce.

U.S. President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson were joined by King Salman bin Abdul-Aziz Al Saud, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif Al Saud and Deputy Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman Al Saud participated in a signing ceremony.

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