RIYADH: Saudi shipbuilder Zamil Offshore and Spain’s Navantia have agreed to cooperate to provide services to the Royal Saudi Naval Forces (RSNF) for its Avante 2200 corvettes, the first of which will be commissioned next year in March.
Navantia has been contracted to design and build five Avante 2200 corvettes for the RSNF under an overall contract, which includes life support for the vessels in Saudi Arabia and training of crew and maintenance technicians.
“Zamil Offshore has a long-term order book for the construction and support of RSNF high-speed interceptors,” CEO Sufyan Al-Zamil told Arab News in an exclusive interview during the World Defense Show, WDS, in Riyadh.
“Our plans include the construction of specialized steel, aluminum and composite vessels. A key part of our growth strategy is to develop a maintenance, repair and managed services business dedicated to operations,” he added.
A key provider of maritime defense and security capabilities in the Kingdom, Zamil participated in WDS to showcase its 32-meter high-speed interceptor for the RSNF. The company has already reserved its space for the next exhibition, which will be held on March 3, 2024.
The Saudi company also showcased its designs for surveillance vessels, tugs and small boats that are in service with key local and international customers. The company is contracted to deliver 27 vessels and has already delivered nine to date.
Zamil, which operates shipyards on both coasts of the Kingdom, has also signed three other agreements with British and French shipping companies to boost Saudi Arabia’s defense capabilities as part of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.
The first is a strategic partnership with UK-based global manufacturer Ribcraft to establish a Rigid Inflatable Boat, or RIB, building facility in the Eastern Province. The company will manufacture the RIBs under license at its current plant in Dammam to serve the Middle East market.
Zamil has also signed two joint venture agreements with CMN Naval, a French shipbuilder headquartered in Cherbourg, to manufacture high-speed composite interceptors and integrated logistics support services for local and export markets.
“Zamil Offshore and CMN Naval will bring industrial assets, systems, financial and technological resources with the aim of leveraging the best of both companies’ capabilities to create a new champion for the shipbuilding industry in the world,” Zamil said.
The company is licensed by the General Authority for Military Industries, GAMI, to engage in various defense activities including manufacturing, services and trading. Zamil is also working to support the Kingdom’s plan to localize 50% of military spending by 2030.
“Zamil is committed to providing facilities, resources and training to maximize local content in all future programs – whether for new ships or life support services,” Al-Zamil said.
Additionally, with the projected backlog, “Zamil Offshore sees further expansion of its workforce across all disciplines, including engineering, project management, skilled labor and supply chain. procurement,” as the company hopes to create more jobs over the next three to five years. .
Specializing in offshore maritime and diving services, offshore construction and connection services, shipbuilding, vessel and platform maintenance and port operations, Zamil has many strategic partners, including Motoren- und Turbinen – Union, or MTU, part of Rolls-Royce.
Part of the global MTU network covering Saudi Arabia, Zamil is the exclusive and sole marine distributor covering sales, aftermarket and services.