By Joseph Roukoz
The Dubai Air Show, held every two years in Dubai at the Central World (DWC) in Jebel Ali, was inaugurated today by H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Ruler of Dubai and Prime Minister and Minister of Defence of the United Arab Emirates.
This show, which has become the largest event dedicated to aeronautics in the region, is being held from 17 to 21 November and hosts 1,200 exhibitors from 63 countries, with 160 aircraft present at the static exhibition, and an expectation of 90,000 visitors according to organizers. As two years ago, the Gulf Aviation Training Event (or GATE), as well as Futures Day will be organized again, there will also be the Space Pavilion where will be held a two-day forum, an event on aeronautical solutions , a Freight Zone and a Drone Summit.
During the inauguration the French Air Force “Patrouille de France” the UAE’s “Al Fursan” aerobatic teams demonstrated their skills, a show very much appreciated by visitors, without forgetting the demonstration of the Rafale presented by the French Air Force.
This edition of the Dubai Air Show confirms the increasing shift towards commercial aviation and the consequent reduction of the defence compartment.
That said, several military planes of different nations were scattered on the tarmac. Among those Leonardo Helicopter’s AW139 Augusta in the Search and Rescue variant, belonging to the UAE National Search and Rescue Centre who bought five aircraft of this version. The Emirates Air Force is exhibiting its Mirage 2000-9 and F16. The announcement for a new fighter jet aiming at modernising the UAE Air Force has been awaited for years, should this event be the right place for such an announcement? The United States are present in force at the Dubai Air Show, and among the several planes present at the static exhibition we mention the F-16, F/A-18 F the A-10 Thunderbolt II.
A dominant present in the military field is definitely that of EDGE, the United Arab Emirates company regrouping 25 national defence-related companies and centres of excellence, which was launched earlier this month in Abu Dhabi and is showing for the first time its brand in a defence and aviation exhibition.
Here our readers can find a selection of press releases issued during the Air Show, while the articles from our correspondents are listed below.