A partnership spanning nearly a century
The Saudi Vision 2030 is “one of the most significant milestones in the Kingdom’s contemporary history since the discovery of oil” - Joe Kaeser
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Siemens built the first gas turbine in Saudi Arabia in 2016, which was not only a milestone for localizing turbine technology, but also the result of a successful program where Siemens trained Saudi youth to build the turbines at the Siemens Dammam Energy Hub. The localization of value chains and skills development among local talent are two key aspects of the transformation that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is undertaking under Vision 2030.
The company has since delivered a total of 11 “Made in KSA” gas turbines. The Siemens Dammam Energy Hub, the first and largest gas turbine facility of its kind in the Middle East, leverages opportunities to localize the Saudi energy value chain.
Saudi Arabia announced its Vision 2030 early in 2016, which aims to, among others, diversify the economy away from oil and prepare young people for the future of work.
The Saudi Vision 2030 is “one of the most significant milestones in the Kingdom’s contemporary history since the discovery of oil,” according to Joe Kaeser, CEO of Siemens AG, and Siemens remains a committed long-term partner on the Kingdom’s path towards social and economic reform.
Nearly a century ago, visionary Saudi businessmen laid the foundation for the Kingdom’s modern-day power infrastructure with Siemens plant equipment, which marked the beginning of a close partnership that continues to this day.
Siemens employs around 1,800 people in Saudi Arabia, the majority of whom are Saudi nationals, and the company’s partnership with Saudi Arabia has gone beyond power generation.
What is important to Saudi Arabia and its people, matters to Siemens. Since the company’s founding over 170 years ago, Siemens has been committed to thinking and acting in the interest of society and the generations that follow –the “business-to-society” approach.
Talent development is among the key aspects of the company’s corporate philosophy. The Service business, for example, is not only a local maintenance, repair and overhaul center, but also a training ground for the tuition of young electrical and mechanical apprentices. As part of the company’s deeper commitment to knowledge transfer and capacity building, Siemens has been working closely with Saudi educational institutions to develop a vocational education concept. This concept is based on the German dual education system, which combines academic and practical phases of learning and assessment in the classroom and on the job.
The initiative has seen 100 young Saudi citizens being trained in the fields of energy, transport, and business administration. Furthermore, Siemens has introduced its Mechatronics curriculum into the Saudi education system, which combines studies in electrical, mechanical and information technology. The curriculum prepares young people for careers in a digital and diverse Saudi economy.
At the same time, Siemens has been investing in higher education. In 2017, the company transferred software to the first universities in the Kingdom, after announcing a €100 million software investment to top universities. Now, the very same technology that was used by NASA to send the Curiosity Rover to Mars in 2012 is available to Saudi universities. Effat University in Jeddah, the first Saudi university to offer engineering courses to women, and King Saud University in Riyadh, are among the first recipients of the software, which potentially gives 1,700 students access to cutting-edge technologies from Siemens. In addition, a train-the-trainer concept at Effat University is helping students to teach their peers at other universitieson how to use the software.
The company thus helps students gain hands-on experience and kick-start their digital careers while boosting their ability to help shape the future of digitalization. The software investment fosters knowledge transfer and the localization of technology, thereby boosting the creation of high-skilled local jobs.
Along the journey to develop engineering excellence and innovation, Effat University and Siemens have already celebrated several milestones. The collaboration has resulted in several innovation workshops, internship opportunities for talented young Saudis, and the co-creation of an Energy Engineering degree course.
With its deeply rooted commitment to training, boosting innovation, and fostering sustainable long-term solutions with its partners, Siemens continues with its commitment to the Kingdom in line with Vision 2030.