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Biggest Airport Show in history ready to take off in Dubai tomorrow

Sheikh Ahmed: Airport Show reflects aviation industry’s growth

The most eagerly-awaited global airport industry exhibition and knowledge-sharing platform is all set to take off in Dubai on Sunday with over 300 exhibitors from 40 countries on board.

The 15th edition of Airport Show, with the 3rd edition of Global Airport Leaders’ Forum (GALF) and 2nd edition of Travel Catering Expo (TCE) as co-located events, is expected to attract 8000 industry professionals during its three-day run at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre (DICEC).

Occupying about 12,000 square metres of exhibition space, spread over three halls, the show is being held under the patronage and presence of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman of Dubai Airports and Chairman and Chief Executive of Emirates Airline and Group.

The world’s top-league airport industry B2B event is supported by Dubai Civil Aviation Authority (DCAA), Dubai Airports, Dubai Aviation Engineering Projects (DAEP), Dubai Air Navigation Services and dnata, among others.

Strong backing came from trade bodies like German Airport Technology and Equipment (GATE), Danish Airport Group, British Aviation Group, British Airport Services and Equipment Association, Swiss Airport Suppliers, Netherlands Airport Technology, UBIFRANCE, UAE Society of Engineers and UAE Contractors’ Association.

The sponsors include emaratech, LG, KIDS, Rotana Hotel, Padiglione Italia, Ajman International Airport and DTP.
Sheikh Ahmed said: “The importance of airports as global travel hubs continues to grow and massive investments being made to meet the rising traffic demand are having a positive economic impact throughout the region. In Dubai, the aviation industry is growing exponentially due to the massive airport expansions needed to accommodate the growth in air traffic and airport development continues to play a strategic role in our future growth agenda. The huge and consistent aviation investments will have a positive impact not just for Dubai alone but for the UAE, Gulf region and the world.”

He added: “The event will bring international aviation experts and leaders to Dubai for an unparalleled knowledge and expertise sharing experience. The Airport Show offers the opportunity to experience the latest aviation technologies and innovations from around the world and allow participants to meet global suppliers and service providers who can help meet their procurement needs. These events will contribute to our combined efforts towards the sustained growth of the global aviation industry.”

Daniyal Qureshi, Group Exhibition Director, Reed Exhibitions Middle East, organisers of Airport Show, said: “We are delighted about the Show’s progress over the years. It is a completely sell-out show. Airport Show 2015 will be the strongest on several fronts, and will deliver the global expertise and innovation that the region’s aviation leaders are looking to reflect in their mega-airport developments.”

He added: “The strong interest among international aviation industry players to participate in the event clearly highlights their keenness to tap into the region’s economic optimism and meets the requirements of regional decision-makers to source their requirements at their doorsteps,” he added.

The show has recorded 38 per cent growth in participants for the Hosted Buyers programme with an all-time high participation of 127 hosted buyers. The strong popularity reflects the immense business opportunities offered by the Middle East region. The Hosted Buyers progrmame, launched for the first time in 2009, has been consistently recording massive growth each passing year.

The number of organizations- civil aviation authorities, airlines and other aviation-related bodies – participating in the programme this year has increased to 53, a 55 per cent jump from last year.

The number of countries which will be represented in the programme has gone up by 67 per cent to 30. This year, a ‘Meet the Buyer’ programme has been launched for the Ground Handling, Air Traffic Management (ATM) and Aviation Security segments.

New countries that will be sending aviation delegations as part of the Hosted Buyers programme are: Algeria, Armenia, Bangladesh, Botswana, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Iraq, Lebanon, Malawi, Maldives, Moldova, Qatar, South Africa, Sri Lanka and Tanzania. The countries returning to the 2015 edition are Bahrain, Egypt, India, Jordan, Kuwait, Libya, Morocco, Oman, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia, Uganda and Zimbabwe, along with the host, UAE.

Daniyal added: “The programme has been a cornerstone of the event’s success and next year we plan to push it much further afield as we have had requests from many other parts of the world this edition”. “In 2014, the event gathered 6,441 aviation professionals who networked, sourced their product requirements and created over $20 billion worth of regional business possibilities”, he said, adding this year’s show is expected to be generate more business possibilities than the past.

Key attractions at the show include Airport Connect, a pre-event business matchmaking service for buyers and sellers, Airport Projects Showcase and Innovation Podium wherein free seminars will be conducted by industry experts on a variety of latest technologies and innovations. The Podium provides companies the opportunity to launch products, demonstrate their capabilities, offer system solutions and share best practices. It has a line-up of 25 speakers representing the top names in the business.

The exhibitors will be unveiling several new technologies, systems and solutions for the aviation industry at the show. There will be six country/region pavilions – Germany, France, UK, Italy, Switzerland and North America (US and Canada)- at the show this year, featuring 102 exhibitors in total.

As a co-located event, the third edition of Global Airport Leaders’ Forum (GALF) will have over 24 speakers representing several leading international and regional organizations including ICAO, IATA, ACI, EUROCONTROL, GCAA, GACA and DANS.

The knowledge-sharing platform will debate current developments and future trends in the aviation industry in general and airports in particular, ranging from airport designing to travel facilitation and airport economics to technological advancement.

In its second edition, the co-located Travel Catering Expo (TCE) has recorded a 10 per cent growth in the number of exhibitors, reaching 47. Among the countries represented at the Expo for the first time will be India, Kuwait, Kenya, Lithuania, Malaysia, Malawi, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Switzerland and Thailand.

This year’s Expo is expected to attract 2000 trade visitors from over 20 countries. Key features of TCE include TCE Business Connect, a dedicated programme to connect buyers and suppliers.

The hosted buyers programme will see over 36 participants and 19 authorities from 14 countries, including Bahrain, India, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Malawi, Mauritius, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Thailand and the UAE.

The authorities, project managers and contractors representing over $100 billion in regional airport developments over the next five years will be attending this edition of the event. The Arab Air Carriers Organization (AACO) said the number of passengers flying through Arab airports will grow to 571 million by 2026.

TechNavio, an Airport Show partner, forecast the aviation market in the Middle East to grow at a CAGR of 5.12 percent over a five year period ending 2019. At the start of 2015, the Centre of Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA), said the total value of airport construction projects globally is worth $543 billion, of which Middle East’s share is $84.5 billion.