By Andy Sambidge
Global giant set to start construction work on Dammam manufacturing facility in May
Siemens has signed a land lease agreement with Saudi Industrial Property Authority for the construction of a manufacturing and service facility in Dammam to serve as a technology hub for knowledge transfer.
Under the agreement, Siemens Energy will lease a 220,000 sq m plot of land in Dammam Industrial City and invest a three-digit million dollar figure in building a centre for the local manufacturing of gas turbines, compressors and heat recovery steam generators as well as repair shops and service facilities for the Saudi market.
Construction on the project is due to start in May, Siemens said in a statement.
Once completed in late 2013, the centre will create job opportunities for young Saudis, it added.
Dr Tawfiq al-Rabea, Saudi Arabia's Minister of Commerce and Industry, said: "This is one of many mega-projects that the industrial cities have successfully attracted and that are due to deliver added value to the national economy, provide local sources for producing energy, in addition to aiding our efforts in localising the workforce in this project.
"We are very pleased with the company's efforts to train young Saudis and qualify them to work on the project in order to achieve true transfer of technical knowledge since citizens of Saudi Arabia have both the competence and talent that enable them to work with the latest international technologies."
Roland Fischer, CEO of Siemens Energy's Fossil Power Generation division, added: "As a long-term partner to Saudi Arabia, we are committed to generating jobs locally and enable the transfer of knowledge.
"With the establishment of a local manufacturing hub and the creation of highly-qualified jobs here, we will make a significant contribution to the further development of Saudi Arabia."
Siemens, which employs more than 1,850 people in its Riyadh headquarters, Jeddah, Dammam, Khobar and Dhahran, will be transferring all the necessary know how that is required in order to run an assembly site and later a manufacturing facility.
Arja Talakar, CEO of Siemens Saudi Arabia said: "The factory in Dammam is another milestone in our continuous commitment to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The facility will be instrumental in the transfer of technological expertise and development of local Saudi talents."