Saudi Arabia State Fund Invests in Domestic MRO
Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund has announced investment in domestic MRO Saudia Technic and plans to develop a designated MRO village in the country.
In a statement released Dec. 21, the state backed Public Investment Fund (PIF) says the investment will look to advance Saudi Arabia’s MRO industry while building a 10.7 million ft.2 maintenance site in Jeddah. The site will include a center for engine maintenance, including an engine test cell which will eventually service both narrowbody and widebody engine types.
“PIF and Saudia Group will transform Saudia Technic into a national MRO champion by investing in infrastructure, boosting efficiency and capturing market growth in Saudi Arabia over the next decade,” the statement read. “Saudia Technic’s ambition is to become the MRO of choice for domestic airlines and global partners seeking access to the Saudi market.”
Saudia Technic currently holds capability for line, base, components and engine maintenance at its facility in Jeddah. The MRO provider says construction of the new MRO site will bring new hangar capacity and an increased number of component shops, which it hopes will lead to a larger share of the country’s future market demand.
Aviation Week has contacted Saudia Technic to disclose the timeframe of the project’s construction, which has already begun, and the eventual regulatory approvals and job creation.
At the end of October, the state-backed Saudia Group rebranded several of its business interests including Jeddah-headquartered Saudia Aerospace Engineering Industries, which became Saudia Technic.
The aviation ambitions of Saudi Arabia have long been known and PIF has made several aviation-related investments over the past few years. As part of efforts to grow commercial passenger traffic, Saudi Arabia plans to expand King Salman International Airport in Riyadh with a target capacity of 120 million travellers annually by 2030. The state fund has also played a role in launching its helicopter venture, The Helicopter Company, and AviLease, which focuses on aircraft leasing services.
In March 2023, the country also launched Riyadh Air—its second flag carrier after Saudia Airlines—which will commence operating from 2025. The airline has orders in place for 39 Boeing 787-9 aircraft along with 33 options for the widebody.