Saudi wants to buy more tanks from Germany
Source: BI-ME with Reuters , Author: Posted by BI-ME staff
Posted: Sun June 17, 2012 12:45 pm

INTERNATIONAL. Saudi Arabia wants to buy 600 to 800 Leopard battle tanks from Germany, at least twice the number previously expected, a German newspaper reported on Sunday.

A deal for around 300 tanks was about to be signed, Bild am Sonntag newspaper said in a report sent to Reuters ahead of publication.

The newspaper said that while there was opposition to the deal in Germany's Chancellery, Foreign Ministry and Defence Ministry, there was support for it within the Economy Ministry.

"The Saudi order could secure the future of German tank-makers Krauss-Maffei Wegman and Rheinmetall, which urgently need new markets because of the restructuring of the German army," said Bild am Sonntag.

A German government spokeswoman declined to comment.

Last year, Germany denied reports that it had agreed to export 270 Leopard tanks to Saudi Arabia. Exports of military equipment cannot be officially acknowledged as they are confidential and disclosure is punishable by a fine or jail.

Opposition lawmakers heaped pressure on Chancellor Angela Merkel's government after reports it had cut a secret deal to sell the tanks, saying it contravened the country's export guidelines for military hardware.

Arms exports are a sensitive issue in Germany given its Nazi past as well as the role arms makers like Krupp played in feeding 19th and 20th century wars with exports to both sides of conflicts.

Germany has refrained from exporting heavy weapons to Gulf states in the past, given its close relationship with Israel and more recently because of the so-called Arab Spring.

Citing industry sources, Bild am Sonntag said Saudi Arabia wanted to sign the deal by July 20, when the Ramadan festival starts.

Spanish firm General Dynamic/Santa Barbara would produce the tanks under licence by the German firms, the newspaper said

 

MIDDLE EAST BUSINESS COMMENT & ANALYSIS

date:Posted: October 29, 2014
UAE. Total wealth in the GCC stood at US$ 1.7 tillion in 2014, up 4.75% from 2013; Total wealth in Saudi Arabia and UAE grew by 5%; Global household wealth up 8.3% to US$263 trillion, driven by the US and Europe, according to Credit Suisse Research Institute.
date:Posted: October 29, 2014
UAE. Significant increase in inflows of private capital into UAE in 2014; UAE seen as hub between Africa and Asia; Political stability remains a major factor driving flows; UAE clear winner in the region, as other GCC countries see net outflows of private capital.
date:Posted: October 28, 2014
INTERNATIONAL. Foreign policy is what a president wishes would happen; foreign affairs are what actually happen; the problem that Obama has, which has crippled his foreign policy, is that his principles have not been defined with enough rigor to provide definitive guidance in a crisis.
UAE. Total wealth in the GCC stood at US$ 1.7 tillion in 2014, up 4.75% from 2013; Total wealth in Saudi Arabia and UAE grew by 5%; Global household wealth up 8.3% to US$263 trillion, driven by the US and Europe, according to Credit Suisse Research Institute.
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