Dubai-based Empire Aviation Group has become the first operator in the Gulf Cooperation Council to take delivery of a new Hawker 4000. The aircraft, along with all of Empire’s fleet, is offered for charter throughout Europe and the Middle East by Avinode (Booth No. 4438), which provides an online suite of tools to charter operators and users.
Arab Wings has stepped up its expansion plans by taking delivery of a new Bombardier Challenger 605 just before the EBACE show opened. The Jordanian charter operator is also applying for an aircraft operator’s certificate in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), where it is about to launch a sister company called Gulf Wings from a base in Sharjah.
Palm Aviation, the Dubai-based flight support provider, has announced the opening of an office in Uzbekistan in the Commonwealth of Independent States. This follows the opening of an office in Miami, Florida, in January 2009. It plans to set up additional offices in Africa and the Middle East before year end.
Rising demand for business aviation in the Middle East and the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) is flying in the face of a decline in the West, according to Dubai-based flight support and ground handling provider Palm Aviation. The company is still seeing demand for flights into the Middle East from the U.S. and Europe and has confirmed plans to expand its operations into both Europe and Saudi Arabia.
Al Jaber Aviation’s $1.2 billion order for 21 new aircraft placed during November’s MEBA show in Dubai confirmed the business aviation industry’s hopes that rising demand in the Middle East will compensate for slowing sales in western markets that are more directly affected by the ongoing financial crisis.
Bell 212, Persian Gulf, United Arab Emirates, Sept. 3, 2008–All seven people aboard the Aerogulf Services Bell 212 were killed when the helicopter hit a crane while taking off from an oil rig in the Persian Gulf. The helicopter had flown cargo from Dubai. After unloading the cargo, it lifted off the helipad, hovered and moved backward into the crane.
Calgary, Canada-headquartered Skyplan has announced the opening of a new office in Sharjah to offer local access to its various services, including flight planning and dispatch, overflight and landing permissions, ground handling and contract jet fuel.
Despite a dour world economy, organizers of the Middle East Business Aviation (MEBA) show, which runs this Sunday through Tuesday in Dubai, expect to exceed last year’s $907 million record as global investors from 29 countries vie for a slice of the region’s growing charter market. Current forecasts predict 15-percent annual growth rates for business aviation in the Middle East over the next five years.
Action Aviation, the exclusive distributor of MD Helicopters in the Middle East, Indian subcontinent and Scandinavia, is showing the 6,500-pound MD902 in the static display. Though appearing at the Dubai Air Show for the first time, it made its first Middle East appearance at the Dubai Helishow in December last year, said Action Aviation managing director Mike Creed.
The Arabian Gulf region has experienced an unprecedented period of economic activity over the past decade, especially here in Dubai, which has succeeded in reducing its reliance on oil to a point where its economy does not seem to depend on that sector for survival.