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Deal Between Saudi Arabia And BAE For Typhoon Purchase Nearing Completion

Deal Between Saudi Arabia And BAE For Typhoon Purchase Nearing Completion
A deal for the purchase of 48 Typhoon fighter jets by Saudi Arabia from BAE Systems – the British aerospace company is near to a closure, said the British company. 
The two sides of the deal signed a memorandum of intent for the purchase soon after a meeting between the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the U.K. Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson.
The signing was "a positive step towards agreeing a contract for our valued partner", said BAE Systems.
The recent visit by the Saudi crown prince to the U.K. resulted in an agreement for setting a target for mutual investments worth a total of £65 billion.
It was just two months ago that the slowing demand for its Typhoon aircraft had forced BAE to announce jobs cuts of up to 2,000 and the preliminary order now comes as a breath ofo fresh ari for the British company. This proposed deal is also a booster for the aerospace industry in the U.K. and a direct reply to the human rights activities who had been crying foul over the visit of the Saudi crown prince and the announcement of mutual investments.
The human rights activities had come down to the street in strong protest against the U.K. selling arms to Saudi Arabia because of the poor human rights record of the Middle Eastern kingdom as well as, and perhaps more importantly, because of the role of the kingdom in Yemen where it is actively participating in air strikes and have been accused of resulting in causing the maximum casualties among civilians in the country.
It has been reported that concerns over both the issues had been raised by U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May during a private dinner meeting with the Saudi Crown Prince.
However, despite the protests and the concerns reportedly expressed by May have clearly not dented the developing of the trade relations further resulting in a deal worth billions of pounds and one that would also ensure continuation of thousands of jobs.
Even though no value was put to the total deal and no financial details were disclosed, there was rise in the shares of BAE by 2 per cent following the announcement of the deal.  
The first step of a potentially huge multi-million pound deal was welcomed by the Aerospace, defence and security industry body ADS.
ADS Chief Executive Paul Everitt said: "The Memorandum of Intent is welcome news for BAE Systems and its UK supply chain, which has a 37.5% workshare on the Typhoon programme."
BAE chief executive Charles Woodburn said: "We are committed to supporting the Kingdom as it modernises the Saudi Armed Forces and develops key industrial capabilities critical to the delivery of Vision 2030."
The recently appointed Crown Prince has initiated processes for both economic and social reforms in the kingdom.

Christopher J. Mitchell

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