Tarafa bint Abdul Rahman Al-Mutairi is the first Saudi woman to receive a Saudi military uniform license from the General Authority for Military Industries (GAMI) of Saudi Arabia.
She has a degree in textile engineering from Tarabah Al-Mutairi, the owner of the Al-Dibaja factory, and has been working in the field since graduation.
She now specializes in making biological and weapons of mass destruction, as well as fire protection clothing, including military equipment.
Saudi Military Uniform Factories
Speaking to Arab News, al-Mutairi said: “My Company is one of the first five companies licensed by Gami in the field of military industries.”
She said her factory was working with international companies to manufacture military equipment locally.
They include a French company with which Al-Mutairi has an agreement to manufacture military uniforms with Saudi and French investment.
‘I started my career in design and textiles because that was my degree. Work in fashion and design depends more on imagination than quantity. However, some industries depend on numbers and this happens in the military sector. Al-Mutairi said
Abdul Rahman Al-Mutairi Working with Miliatary
About working in the military sector, she believes that as a strategic sector, the industry must be localized to move towards self-determination.
“The second reason was that I could help provide employment opportunities for women. Textile is a business in which women can do something new and the production line in this field has been my goal for twenty years.
Al-Mutairi has been working on the project for 12 years when she started her first factory. She has always been at the forefront of the demand for local military uniforms.
Turfah bint Abdulrahman Al-Mutairi factory
When Tarafat al-Mutairi opened her first factory, the issue of localization of military industries was not under consideration of the government. Many of her relatives work in the military, which has made him aware of the needs of the military industry.
She said she spoke to Maj. Gen. Atiyah al-Maliki, head of the AFED Exhibition 2016, and appreciated Tarafi al-Mutairi’s views, after which Tarafa also took part in the exhibition.
There she had the opportunity to work with international companies such as BAE Systems, an aircraft manufacturer.
I talked to them about their needs. Then we started meeting their needs and providing them with spare parts for military aircraft such as engine courses etc. We have also started increasing our production capacity to meet the demand for their other products. She Added
Al-Mutairi said that these spare parts are also a type of textile which has special properties.
She said: ‘Experience starts with a small task and then more things start to come together. We are in the early stages of development and we are in the process of doing something new.
She said that for centuries, women have been involved in fabric and textile production.
Saudi Military Uniform Design
She added that, the military uniforms have special requirements to make it easier for wearers to work in the field.
“That’s why we take into account the needs of the military in the design and use of materials,” he said. We had experience making uniforms for staff at the National Center for Security Operations. The director of the center, Major General Abdul Rehman, supported us and the Interior Ministry approved the uniforms.
Al-Mutairi says there are some similarities between the uniforms of Saudi forces and those of other countries. The most widely used uniform is the camouflage number 4 worn during deployment.
She told that, ‘They look like the surrounding environment, whether it is a desert or a mountain. Its patterns are considered and further modified using state-of-the-art textile engineering and color combination technology.
It takes a long time to change uniforms and requires military approval. I believe the transformation of the Saudi economy and new investment in the military industry is encouraging. Al-Mutairi added
She said that Saudi Arabia wants to bring 50% of the military industry to the local level.
There are many consumers of military technology and it is certain that if the quality of the product is good then they will be purchased. She added.
Military Budget Ranking
She added that as Saudi Arabia ranks fourth in the world in military spending. It is a good opportunity for Saudi and foreign investors. “You would think that 50 percent of this cost would go to local factories.”
In the future, Al-Mutairi wants to partner with more foreign companies to make further progress in this area.
She is also expected to meet with Chinese and Greek companies. Also she is ready to work with any company that wants to enter the Saudi market.
Saudi Military Uniform
Military uniforms protected from weapons of mass destruction are made exclusively at the Al-Mutairi factory, as it is the only such factory in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf region.
She said her company would soon consider exporting uniforms.
Her company has 170 employees and plans to hire 213 more soon.
She said most of her staff were women, “because Saudi women have taken over the Department of Foreign Employees and get their work done quickly.”
She said that, the speed and success of the 49 Saudi women working on the factory’s production line had put pressure on the rest of the staff to improve.