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WDS 2022: MBDA, SAMI sign agreement on missile maintenance

SAMI and MBDA are furthering their relationship with an MRO agreement, and potential future manufacturing of the CAMM missile, seen here during a test firing from HMS Argyll . (MBDA)

Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI) and European missile systems conglomerate MBDA signed a memorandum of understanding to further their relationship at the World Defense Show (WDS) in Riyadh on 8 March.

SAMI CEO Walid Abukhaled told Janes that under the agreement a centre for missile maintenance, repair, and overhaul would be established in the Kingdom, with SAMI staff also going to France to study at the company's Missile Systems University.

A SAMI spokesperson further told Janes that MBDA's Common Anti-air Modular Missile (CAMM) and CAMM-ER (extended range) missiles were planned to be produced by the joint venture with SAMI, as well as the SPEAR (Selective Precision Effects At Range) air-launched stand-off weapon. Further capacity building to help Saudi nationals design, develop, and produce complex missiles and missile systems would also be transferred. However, production would be subject to a contract award by the Saudi Ministry of Defence.

Saudi Arabia is also currently fielding the Thales Lightweight Multirole Missile (LMM) in a short-range air defence role within the Shikra air defence system. According to a SAMI spokesperson, LMM is currently being manufactured by Thales, as a larger quantity of missiles would need to be procured in order to warrant localised production.

Thales launched a joint venture with SAMI in January 2019 to cover air-defence, short-range, and counter-rockets radars, command-and-control systems, multi-mission missiles, fuses for guided bombs, and radio systems.

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