FILE PHOTO: Denel company logo is seen in Pretoria

Saudi SAMI continues partnership talks with S.Africa's Denel after rebuff

DUBAI (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's state defence company is continuing to hold commercial partnership talks with South Africa's Denel which said this month it would not sell a stake to the Saudi firm.

Denel Chief Executive Danie du Toit told Reuters the state-owned company was open to partnerships but would not sell equity or relinquish intellectual property rights to SAMI, which last year made a $1 billion bid for a broad partnership.

"We have ongoing talks," Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI) Chief Executive Andreas Schwer told Reuters on Monday.

"Acquiring a stake is just one option but various options are still there."

He said that included partnering on programmes or working on greenfield projects.

SAMI, established in 2017, is mandated to develop a commercially sustainable defence industry in Saudi Arabia.

It has signed over two dozen agreements with international companies to develop the domestic industry, and this month it was announced SAMI would collaborate with South African private defence firm Paramount Group.

Saudi Arabia and its allies account for almost half of South Africa's recent arms exports and a significant portion of future orders.

(Reporting by Alexander Cornwell; editing by David Evans)

2019-07-15 19:53:53

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