Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 June 2019

UAE Armed Forces sign Dh4.8bn in deals on Idex day 3

Majority of contracts awarded to local companies at international defence show in Abu Dhabi

Local firms picked up most contracts on third day of defence exhibition in Abu Dhabi. Ravindranath K / The National
Local firms picked up most contracts on third day of defence exhibition in Abu Dhabi. Ravindranath K / The National

The UAE Armed forces awarded Dh4.87 billion in contracts on the third day of the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (Idex) with the majority going to local companies.

The Armed Forces, which signed a total of 28 deals, awarded 20 local companies a total of Dh4.36bn worth of contracts, General Mohammed Khamis Al Hassani, the official spokesman for Idex, said in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday.

Al Jasoor Heavy Vehicle Industry clinched the biggest contract among local companies, to supply Arma 8x8 armoured vehicles to the land forces, a deal valued at Dh2.42bn, said Colonel Fahad Al Tehli, the official spokesman of the Idex sister event the Naval Defence Exhibition and Conference (Navdex).

Abu Dhabi-based International Golden Group won two deals to supply spare parts and maintenance for armed forces’ equipment worth Dh270m as well as thermal cameras to the land forces worth Dh28.5m, he said.

Abu Dhabi-based small arms producer Caracal International got a Dh29.9m contract for weapons and ammunition. Etimad Holding won a Dh949.9m deal to install security systems related to critical infrastructure and coastline protection.

International companies won eight contracts worth a total of Dh514.8m.

French defence giant Thales clinched a Dh93.7m contract to supply Captas sonar to the UAE Navy, Gen Al Hassani said. The UAE Armed Forces also signed a Dh152.5m contract with US-based DigitalGlobe to provide space imaging services.

The UAE, a major defence buyer, is seeking to build a homegrown defence industry as part of a strategy to grow local military companies, diversify the economy from oil and create jobs. This involves working with international defence companies for transfer of technology and know-how and the country is increasingly seeking more sophisticated offset programmes from defence suppliers.

The Armed Forces awarded a total of Dh16.86bn worth of contracts since the Idex started on Sunday, Gen Al Hassani said.

The contracts were announced at the week-long Idex military expo in Abu Dhabi.

The value of deals during the five-day event is likely to exceed the Dh19.17bn reached in 2017, Idex organisers said earlier this month.

The UAE has the biggest pavilion in terms of space at the biennial event, followed by the US, Germany, France, Italy and Saudi Arabia.

Separately on Tuesday, Abu Dhabi Ship Building and Italy’s Leonardo signed at Idex an agreement to jointly work together to create a combat management system (CMS) for the UAE Navy, according to state-run news agency WAM.

They will work together on an integrated laboratory for testing, maintaining and developing the software of Leonardo’s CMS system that is operational on more than 20 of the UAE Navy’s ships, it said.

Updated: February 19, 2019 08:00 PM