Prince Turki: Strategic Partnerships Key to Saudi Innovation


Momentum to center strategic partnerships that drive innovation as a key pillar of development is picking up in Saudi Arabia, according to Prince Turki bin Saud bin Mohammed Al-Saud, president of King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology (KACST).

In order to take research and development (R&D) to the next level, strategic partnerships between academic institutions and the private sector will enhance manufacturing and production.

Prince Turki told the Oxford Business Group’s (OBG) online broadcasting service Global Platform, “We are targeting collaborations with the world’s leading organizations which will enable us to move from innovation to commercialization.”

Strategic partnerships are being realized in a number of fields, including aerospace. Saudi Arabia has joined forces with Antonov, a Ukrainian aircraft manufacturing and services company, to develop technology and manufacture the aircraft inside the Kingdom.

Additionally, there are plans in the coming years to build a facility at King Khalid International Airport that can accommodate the construction of aircraft such as Airbus 380 and Boeing 777.

Beyond the aerospace industry, strategic partnerships have been formed to carry out a wide range of R&D, from renewable energy to genomics and value-added manufacturing and nontechnology.

Strategic Partnerships to Boost Local Production

Vision 2030 lays out a goal to increase local content by at least 70 percent, and the formation of key partnerships between the public and private sector will enable this production to occur.

“Saudi Arabia’s economic development will depend on innovation, which requires a lot of R&D,” Prince Turki said. “The country is now concentrating on the real revered wealth of the country, and that’s its people, in addition to other resources that Allah granted it.”

The decision to harness people as invaluable resources to economic development is also in line with Vision 2030 and it aim to ensure that Saudi citizens are equipped for the economy of the future.

In Saudi Arabia, the economy of the future will be driven by innovation, diversification and development of previously untapped industries and potential.

Read the full story on Arab News.