Abdul Latif Jameel (ALJ) and Japanese company Kosei Aluminium (Kosei) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the National Industrial Clusters Development Program (NICDP), driving foreign investment into Saudi Arabia’s auto manufacturing sector.
The MoU seeks to explore the manufacturing of automotive aluminum wheels and components in Saudi Arabia and is the first major Saudi Arabian-based automotive components manufacturing venture intended to produce export products for worldwide markets.
Long-term plans for the venture involve the establishment of a factory in Saudi Arabia, as a global hub for Kosei, contributed by Saudi Arabian Mining Company (MA’ADEN). The volume of wheels produced is expected to represent a significant market share in the world. The MoU, signed by NICDP Vice President Abdullah Al-Hazani, on behalf of NICDP President Homood Al-Tuwaijiri, Kosei CEO and President Shunkichi Kamiya, and Abdul Latif Jameel Vice Chairman and Deputy President Hassan Jameel will see Abdul Latif Jameel, Kosei and NICDP undertake a study into the technical and financial feasibility of manufacturing automotive aluminum die casting wheels and components in Saudi Arabia.
This would contribute to the development of the manufacturing industry in the country — a key priority of Saudi Vision 2030.
Kamiya said: “It is our pleasure to sign this MoU with NICDP and Abdul Latif Jameel, to discover the enormous potential and various opportunities in the Kingdom as well as the MENA region. I am pleased to state that, the timing of Kosei’s global vision 2021 and Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 are so apt that, it has brought the three parties together to conduct the feasibility study and work toward achieving the goals.”
Al-Hazani said: “We are glad to have this MoU signed with Kosei Aluminum, one of the prominent global automotive suppliers in Japan, and Abdul Latif Jameel, one of the biggest automotive business expertise established in Saudi Arabia.”
Signing this MoU is a part of NICDP’s plans and activities to develop a globally competitive automotive industry, together with growing a strong automotive parts supply base, in Saudi Arabia, which is in line with Vision 2030 to diversify economy in non-oil sector in the kingdom.
Jameel said: “This MoU explores the exciting potential to bring manufacturing skills and jobs to Saudi Arabia and marks the first Saudi Arabian venture in large-scale automotive components manufacturing for export. The agreement is an important step in NICDP’s efforts to develop the manufacturing industry in Saudi Arabia in accordance with Saudi Vision 2030, and strives to make a valuable contribution to the Saudi automotive cluster.”
The signing comes ahead of the expected visit to Saudi Arabia by Japanese Prime Minister, Shinzō Abe, and follows a visit by King Salman in March 2017, during which Saudi Arabia and Japan agreed to deepen existing bilateral relations between the two countries and establish a solid strategic partnership, as part of the Saudi-Japan Vision 2030.