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RIYADH: Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Saudi Aramco) secured deals worth about $7.2 billion ($1 = 0.92 euros) during the seventh edition of the Kingdom’s Total Value Added (Iktva) Forum in Dhahran on Monday.
During the forum, the company also launched Aramco Digital Company to accelerate its digital transformation efforts.
“Today I am proud to announce a major new digital transformation initiative with the launch of Aramco Digital Company. We plan to invest $1.9 billion over the next three years, making it Aramco’s largest digital investment to date. In addition, this investment adds value to the Kingdom’s digital ecosystem,” said Amin Nasser, Chairman and CEO of Saudi Aramco.
Saudi Arabia will be a land of opportunity for investors, but a “kingdom of real opportunity for all.”
Ahmed A. Al-Saadi, Aramco’s Executive Vice President of Technical Services, commented on the company’s launch. “This is a great example of innovation in action, bringing cutting-edge expertise in artificial intelligence (AI) and emerging technologies to an important sector of the economy.”
The energy giant signed more than 100 agreements and memorandums of understanding on the first day of the event, which will last until February 2 and was held under the theme “Accelerating Future Successes”.
During the event, Aramco signed a strategic partnership agreement with Zoom, as well as an agreement with Taulia Inc. to implement supplier financing solutions.
In addition, the company has entered into a definitive agreement with DHL to form a joint venture and provide sourcing and supply chain services. It has also partnered with the Saudi Ministry of Investment to develop and promote investment opportunities.
Other contracts signed by Aramco during the event include an agreement with Accenture to accelerate the integration of systems and digital solution services. The company also signed an agreement with Achilles to develop and localize environmental, social and governance rating services.
The CEO of Aramco told the audience that the Iktva program has reached 63% local content in 2022, from 35% in 2015 when it was first launched. Saudi Arabia’s energy minister, Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman, said he hopes to reach 85% local content by 2030.
“During the first seven editions of Iktva, nothing would be possible without the exceptional commitment of our suppliers to localization. This has made Aramco’s businesses more profitable, more sustainable and more reliable, while sharing the promised rewards,” Mr. Nasser told the audience.
“My generation can be proud to pass on a leading integrated energy business, pioneer decarbonisation and put Aramco at the center of low-carbon projects such as blue hydrogen, renewables and more sustainable materials,” he said.
The forum highlights collective localization efforts in key areas such as digital space, sustainability, industrial and manufacturing sectors. “The local supplier ecosystem is a top priority for Aramco and a major contributor to the Kingdom’s economy. Through this ambitious program, we are helping to create a culture of innovation and provide quality jobs for our growing population,” added Mr. Al-Saadi.
The Iktva program encourages international companies to establish their regional headquarters in the Kingdom. Since its inception, more than 150 investments have been made in the Kingdom, including the first products produced in Saudi Arabia. The company has also established 16 national training centers covering more than 60 professions in 10 cities in Saudi Arabia. Al-Saadi said that more than 48,000 Saudi citizens have graduated from these centers so far.
The presentation given on the first day of the event also highlighted the role of Saudi women and their achievements in their fields.
After the presentation, Prince Abdulaziz joked that the ten or more exceptional women featured in the video would soon leave Aramco and be hired by the ministry: “I am sure that next year the young women you have brought to your attention will be working in Riyadh. within the ministry,” he introduced the Minister of Energy to the public, who started laughing.
“An important role of the Department of Energy is to act as a facilitator and driver of the localization program. We are in constant contact with all other elements of the ecosystem and are ready to support, encourage and encourage other government agencies to redouble their efforts,” assured Prince Abdulaziz.
The first day of the event attracted more than 10,000 visitors and more than 290 companies took advantage of the exhibition.
This text is a translation of an article published on Arabnews.com