Eight senior air force commanders from the U.S., Europe and the Middle East have agreed to speak at the Dubai International Air Chiefs Conference (DIAC), which immediately precedes the Dubai Air Show on November 16. They include the British and French air force commanders, and the commander of the USAF’s Central Command. Their decision to attend the conference and show may reflect a desire to reassure allies in the Gulf of their support, after recent disagreements over policy toward Egypt and Syria.
United Arab Emirates
At the sixth Middle East Business Aviation meeting in Dubai, Dec. 8-10, 2014, prepare for some changes. The meeting is moving to a new home at Dubai World Central at Al Maktoum International Airport, located near Jebel Ali, Dubai, which is the same location as next month’s Dubai Airshow (November 17-19).
Business aviation is set to make a strong showing at next month’s Dubai Airshow, with the sector expected to account for as many as 50 of the 150 aircraft anticipated on the static display and around 220 of the exhibiting companies. In addition to all the main airframers, bizav service providers such as Jet Aviation, ExecuJet Aviation, Royal Jet and Jetex are booked to exhibit at the event.
Go Aviation Middle East has begun providing professional aircraft detailing and polishing services at Dubai International Airport and Dubai World Central-Al Maktoum International Airport. Marc Lelah, the company’s vice president, said, “We are here to transform the aircraft appearance industry in the Middle East and reduce the carbon footprint of the UAE. Dry washing is going to make a positive impact on the environment here in Dubai and throughout the Middle East.”
The International Council of Aircraft Owner and Pilot Associations (IAOPA) has approved Jordan as its 72nd affiliate, making it the seventh IAOPA Middle Eastern affiliate after Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Turkey, Israel and Egypt. “From an IAOPA and global general aviation perspective, we are excited to see GA take root in the Middle East and for governments there to recognize its economic importance,” said IAOPA secretary general Craig Spence.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is defending its plan to establish a customs pre-clearance facility at Abu Dhabi International Airport staffed by its Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency but mostly funded by the host UAE government. Airline industry groups contend the facility will mainly benefit Etihad Airways, Abu Dhabi’s government-owned airline, and place U.S.
The 13th edition of the Dubai Airshow (Chalet D-50) is expected to break its own record of 56,548 attendees in 2011 to more than 60,000 visitors this year, a 6-percent increase. The show will also have a bigger defense presence, particularly from the U.S., and as the region’s commercial aviation ambitions expand, many aircraft orders are expected to be signed, said Sharief Fahmy, CEO of F&E Aerospace, which is responsible for the event’s management.
The General Civil Aviation Authority of the United Arab Emirates on June 4 announced plans to add two routes between the UAE and Bahrain, bringing the total number to three, to increase system capacity and improve traffic flow. No implementation date was announced for the new routes, which were created in partnership with the Dubai Foundation for Air Navigation Services.
Since 2007 XJet has been operating its award-winning XJet Club and FBO at Denver’s Centennial Airport, opening up the facility to transient customers in 2009. The facility offers “seven-star” service that has ranked the FBO top for two years running in AIN’s U.S. FBO Survey service provider category. Now, that service is to be extended to a new base at Dubai’s Al Maktoum International Airport, part of the huge Dubai World Central (DWC) development.
XJet, which has been operating an FBO at Denver Centennial Airport since 2007, is opening a second base at Dubai Al Maktoum International Airport. Last week, XJet founder and CEO Josh Stewart signed a 10-year lease agreement to establish an exclusive club and FBO service at the airport, which expects to see a doubling of private jet movements within the next five years. XJet has also committed to ultimately moving its headquarters to the UAE as it grows the company’s footprint in the Middle East.