The UAE will host Expo 2020!
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Dubai Air show to spring big surprises

posted on 31/10/2001: 1980 views

Dubai 2001 will offer a lot of surprises to the region's aviation industry with some of the leading players announcing huge deals, according to Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Department of Civil Aviation and Chairman of Emirates. "I promise you, there will be big surprises during this year's airshow," he reassured industry officials during an interview with the Air Force Magazine on the five-day airshow which begins on Sunday. "Deals are not made during the exhibition as purchase decisions are preceded by in-depth study and communication between the manufacturers and the parties that place orders. They usually postpone the announcements for big events like air shows which give the deals and the events more prominence," he said.

About Emirate's interest in Boeing's Sonic Cruiser and Airbus A380s, he said, any airline would consider several elements when determining its needs of future aviation requirements, including seating capacity, speed, operating economics, etc. "We have expressed our interest in Airbus A380 since the very beginning when the Airbus Industrie announced its plans to develop the aircraft. Besides, an Emirates delegation met Boeing officials in Seattle in July and held fruitful discussions with them on the proposed new aircraft, which we believe, will serve our future plans. "We were also briefed about the technical details of the aircraft and we were interested in the speed and sound level of the new aircraft. The aircraft can fly upto 7,000 to 9,000 miles without being refuelled and it has the option for seating between 157 to 300 passengers." Sheikh Ahmed said, it is premature to talk about the aircraft as they are waiting for more details and the feasibility study report.

Praising the airshow, Sheikh Ahmed said, Dubai air show has made its position in the world's premier aviation exhibition map. "Over 500 exhibitors from 33 countries will participate in this year's air show which shows the commercial significance of the event among the aircraft manufacturers all over the world. "It now stands among the world's three leading air shows: the Farnborough and Le Bourget air shows. "Since its beginning in 1989, the event has grown from strength to strength." The seventh air show, he said, will display a Czech-made 159-ALKA for the first time in its history. He said, among the important activities at the air show this year there will be the second Middle East Conference on Aviation Finance which will be attended by senior officials of the aviation industry, aircraft leasing institutions, banks, aircraft manufacturers and airlines.

Sheikh Ahmed attributed the government's firm backing to the show for its worldwide success. "The biennial event acquires great significance due to several factors, and the most important is the Dubai Government's unlimited support and the vision of General Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Minister Defence, and his directives to build a permanent exhibition facility for the event, at a cost of Dh300 million. "This comes from Sheikh Mohammed's understanding of the development of international economy and to meet the emirate's future aspiration to become a global hub for specialised exhibitions and international centre for neighbouring countries. "The high quality construction criteria and the world-class facilities in the venue of 52,000 square metres of exhibition space and other facilities accorded to the participants have qualified the exhibition to become the first in the world in terms of facilities." He said, the geographical position of the UAE at the crossroads between the East and West, its wise policies and credibility in the international arena, the infrastructure and security, all these contribute to the success of the exhibition.

Sheikh Ahmed said, the event is more civilian than military and offers mostly commercial aviation products. He said the future of the show is bright as the GCC countries would invest more on civil aviation in the coming years. "In view of the openness witnessed by the Middle East countries and the high growth in air traffic and tourism in the region, these countries will need to spend billions of dollars to develop their airports and facilities in the next 20 years. He said, countries of the region will spend billions of dollars in the development of civil aviation facilities, airports and acquiring commercial aircraft, which will contribute to the growth of the event in future. On Dubai's plans for infrastructure development, he said, "Dubai has outshined others in this field, thanks to the directives and the vision of our government to develop Dubai's international airport to meet the travel requirements of the 20th Century. (The Gulf News)


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