Sale of security systems boom in Saudi Arabia

Friday, May 7, 2004

ABU DHABI Security systems have become a hot item in Saudi Arabia amid Al Qaida's offensive against the kingdom.

Saudi contractors reported a significant increase in sales of security systems for the protection of facilities, offices and sites. They included infrared cameras, sensors and communications equipment.

"Our requests for such security items as access control systems has gone up by 20 percent and for electronic cameras and other surveillance equipment by 15 percent over the last two years," Jamal Okhla, executive manager of Arab Builders for Security, told the Jedda-based Arab News.

Contractors said the increased demand includes that from both government and private companies, Middle East Newsline reported. The greatest demand, they said, was from Western residency compounds in such cities as Jedda and Riyad.

The Interior Ministry has increased security around key facilities in Saudi Arabia since the Al Qaida attack on the petrochemical and refinery complex in Yanbu on May 1, which killed five Western engineers from ABB Lummus. The ministry has deployed troops and established checkpoints on roads to critical sites in Yanbu as well as other cities.

"Our country will remain strong in the face of destruction and terrorism," Saudi Deputy National Guard Commander Prince Miteb Bin Abdullah told Western nationals. "The security situation is extremely satisfactory.

Your protection is the responsibility of all people in this country."

Despite the increased security, Western nationals in the oil sector were leaving Saudi Arabia. They included more than 100 employees and dependents from ABB Lummus. Other U.S. companies operating in Yanbu were also sending employees home in wake of the Al Qaida attack.

Copyright 2004 East West Services, Inc.

Print this Article Print this Article Email this article Email this article Subscribe to this Feature Free Headline Alerts

Search Worldwide Web Search Search WorldTrib Archives