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IDEX recognises Abu Dhabi growing influence at global defence industry: BAE Systems

posted on 23/02/2009: 1557 views



BAE Systems, a veteran exhibitor at IDEX since it was introduced into the defence show calendar in 1993, says the show has developed to be much more than just a showcase for land systems and now embraces every aspect of the defence industry.

Simon Keith, Managing Director of BAE Systems, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific, emphasises that the company's presence is not only centred on the offering of specific equipment and systems.

"We also treat IDEX as one of the major corporate shows, where we have recognised the growing influence of Abu Dhabi, not just in the region, but further afield in Africa, Mediterranean Europe and South-East Asia. We are not there just to sell, but also to make a corporate statement,' Keith says in an interview with the Show Daily.

'We are favourably impressed by Abu Dhabi's ability to attract the right companies, as well as delegations and visitors, to IDEX, its organisation and superb infrastructure," he adds "Our export business is now much more balanced than in the past, with the Middle East representing a key part of it," says Keith. "Our continued presence in the region, where we have several offices, confirms our confidence in continuing business." When asked if BAE System targets specific requirements in the region, or if there are perceived trends towards clearly defined defence needs, he replies: "If you asked me twelve months ago, I would have said the emphasis was on Homeland Security, with our businesses targeting that particular sector.

While this has not gone away," Keith adds, "there is a much wider spread of issues, providing many more opportunities. It is precisely because of the high level of defence and anti-terrorism capability [in the region] that allows people to travel there and go about their business or leisure in a safe and normal manner." "We are confident that in spite of the current economic conditions, there is a very good chance of reasonable growth in the market" he concludes. – Emirates News Agency, WAM

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