Investments in airport expansions in the Arabian Gulf’s aviation heartland is due for its biggest push after Dubai’s win to host the World Expo 2020 — the third biggest event after the Olympics and Fifa World Cup.
The emirate’s expansion in airport capacity and facilities will provide vast growth opportunities for the global aviation industry.
A significant portion of the government investments planned for infrastructure development in the emirate will be for the aviation industry with the airports sector being the top priority. The global aviation industry will benefit immensely with the opening of the floodgates of new investments in the run up to the event, which will attract 25 million tourists to the economically-vibrant region.
His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai said: “We have a lot to accomplish and we have no excuse for any delays or poor performance. We have what it takes to achieve as we are blessed with rich resources, capabilities, expertise, positive energy, a thirst for knowledge, dedication and above all, the leadership’s unlimited support.”
Dubai is expected to invest more than $8 billion in new infrastructure to host Expo 2020. Total spending related to the Expo, including private sector projects, could reach $18.3 billion, HSBC estimated. As much as $43 billion in infrastructure projects would need to be developed in preparation for the event, Deutsche Bank estimated. Aviation has established itself as a vital contributor to the UAE’s economy, contributing more than Dh145 billion or 14.7 per cent to the national Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Shaikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority, Chairman of Dubai Airports, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Emirates airline and Group, and Chairman of the Expo 2020 Preparatory Committee, said: “The required costs would not be problematic as it makes sense and has a business case. The World Expo in Dubai would present opportunities and leave a lasting legacy, not only for Dubai and the UAE, but for the economy and the wider region.”
“This contribution is projected to grow further in the coming years and as such justifies the country’s huge investment in airports and airline networks. Aviation and logistics have had a major impact on other economic sectors such as tourism, hospitality, trade and finance, and activity in one spurs growth in the others,” he remarked.
Taking place from May 11-13 at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, the Airport Show 2014 emerges as the first gateway for global airport industry players to showcase their portfolio of the latest and innovative products, services and solutions and to also get business-driven networking with regional decision-makers and key players.
Daniyal Qureshi, event director of the Airport Show, said: “The show offers aviation companies and regional airport authorities a win-win formula. Its going to the best B2B event for the industry to tap the boundless business opportunities over the next seven years leading up to Expo 2020. From a readiness point of view, the year 2020 is just around the corner.”