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MEBA2012: UAE poised for BizAv game-change – Mubadala boss

Posted 11 December 2012 · Add Comment

The business aircraft industry is too fragmented; consolidation must occur and the UAE is ready to step in.

Homaid al ShemmariThat was the message delivered by Homaid Al Shemmari, executive director, Mubadala Aerospace, in his keynote presentation at the Middle East Business Aviation Conference in Dubai yesterday.

He added that this could bring great opportunities – his task was to ensure that the Middle East, and Abu Dhabi in particular, were at the centre of any growth.
 
Shemmari said that was not going to happen overnight. “Change is a long-term process,” he said. “Emirates, Etihad, and Qatar are a model for the future success of this region. But their success didn’t happen overnight.
 
We must be patient but there will be game-changing events in this region.”
Shemmari said that the success of Mubadala, which means ‘exchange’, is an example of what the UAE could do if it put its mind to the task.
 
The company grew from Abu Dhabi’s need to diversify out of oil and gas into new industries, to create a more balanced economy.
 
Shemmari said that while the UAE was a large buyer of business aircraft, it doesn't want to “continue the same game”.
We now want exchange. We will buy 100 planes but we want something in return. We want investment in this region in
terms of manufacturing, support and supply.”
 
He added that the challenge today for business aviation was to have a global dimension. Shemmari said that business aircraft manufacturers have no choice – they are going to have to focus on MENA and the Far East.
 
So,” he asked, “what kind of manufacturing can we have in the UAE? We have a talented, educated workforce. We have specialist skills ­– just look at our $1 billion composite manufacturing plant in Al Ain.
 
“If it requires capital, if it requires energy, if it requires land, guess what? Abu Dhabi has it all.
 
We must all align to address those challenges and be ready to grow. But we will need patience," he concluded.

 

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