2022 iktva Forum: Driving localization, sustainability, and resilience
The flagship Aramco program has left its mark on the Kingdom’s economy and has built economic resilience in the most challenging of times.
The In-Kingdom Total Value Add (iktva) Forum and Exhibition is back, bigger and better than before, showcasing a program that has helped transform the way Aramco does business and build resilience in the Kingdom’s economy.
Mohammad A. Al Shammary, vice president of Procurement and Supply Chain Management, is upbeat about this years’ event at the Dhahran Expo, which opens its doors on Monday, Jan. 24 and ends on Wednesday, Jan. 26.
He says that the iktva program had helped to mitigate the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic worldwide. Localization of the energy supply chain now stands at 59%.
“While there were many lockdowns around the world, we continued working in-Kingdom, and that is because of the efforts that the company has made over the past 20 years, specifically since the launch of iktva in 2015,” according to Al Shammary.
Since its launch, the iktva program with its focus on localization, training and providing quality job opportunities for a youthful population has embedded itself within Aramco’s entire energy industry supply chain. It has been a galvanizing influence and an important catalyst for the energy industry.
Its success, Al Shammary believes, is in no small measure proven by the way the company, and the Kingdom, have continued to deliver economically during the pandemic.
“Otherwise, the company would have incurred a huge cost. Due to materials being manufactured locally, we didn’t feel that cost. It’s a great example of how iktva has paid off and how it is so important to the company and the country.
“If you ensure that the supply chain and ecosystem around you is intact, your processes will be maintained and you will continue to deliver,” he said.
The situation with the pandemic is a great example of the success of iktva. Because of iktva, and because of the localization of materials and services, that enabled us not to feel much impact.
— Mohammed A. Al Shammary
A positive spinoff for the iktva program is the influence that it has had on localization in the wider Saudi economy.
“If all private businesses, companies, and government start to localize and have ownership of localization, then the Kingdom’s economy will be elevated,” says Al Shammary.
The model and formula
The Kingdom has followed the iktva model and its formula.
“It’s a very well-designed formula because it drives localization. The suppliers want their score to be high, that’s why they’re looking at localization and Saudization. If the score is not high, they do not get a piece of the cake,” adds Al Shammary.
Another focus is on the training of Saudis, which is embedded in the iktva formula.
Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) and cybersecurity requirements have also been factored into the iktva model.
“In this way,” says Al Shammary, “the companies are ensuring their stability. That enables them to do business with everybody, not just Aramco. That’s why we have the export factor in the formula — if you export, you get more points — we want to drive sustainability.”
Al Shammary notes the iktva Forum is almost 70% bigger than the previous events when it comes to the exhibition.
“The exhibition this year will have approximately 260 exhibitors compared to 140 in previous events. These exhibitors will showcase their localization efforts, their products, and their contribution to the iktva program,” he says.
“Also, we will have 50 plus workshops and seminars. These workshops and seminars are at the very heart of the iktva event. This is where the company shares the opportunities to those in attendance. There are approximately 180 investment opportunities to be presented. The opportunities cover oil field equipment, nonmetallic, chemicals, to IR 4.0,” Al Shammary adds.
Final preparations are underway to host the event, which will be held in compliance with the latest government COVID-19 guidance.