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New international exhibition centre launched in Abu Dhabi

United Arab Emirates: Sunday, April 30 - 2006 @ 17:54

The decision to build a new exhibition centre for the UAE was driven by an in-depth review of the existing and potential exhibition market. The conclusion reached by the Government of Abu Dhabi is that the demand from visitors and exhibitors has expanded dramatically and significant opportunities exist for new international exhibitions and conferences. In particular, Abu Dhabi is emerging as a unique market and the massive developments that are planned will support a range of significant exhibitions.

The exhibition complex will include 57,000 square metres of gross exhibition floor space, a massive 21,000 square metres visitor concourse and 7,500 square metres of multi-purpose halls. The new centre will also feature dedicated conference facilities for 1,200 people, banqueting areas and more than 30 high-specification meeting rooms.

The first phase of the project is already well under way and on schedule for completion by December 2006 to host the internationally recognised IDEX 2007 defence exhibition and conference. Built in the ‘U-shape’ that has proven so successful in the best venues in the world, the Centre will contain a central landscaped plaza for outdoor events.

The focal feature of the complex will be an iconic soaring tower that will curve above the centre and look out to the sea. Innovative in its design, the tower is a bold architectural statement that reflects ADNEC’s plans to become an internationally recognisable venue. The tower will become the brand that promotes the venue and Abu Dhabi to the world.

In announcing the new centre, ADNEC Chairman, His Excellency Sheikh Sultan Bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan said:

“Quality exhibitions will play an important role in creating international awareness of Abu Dhabi, as well as in attracting investment, new industry and business tourism. It is essential that we have a new world-class venue to host these events”.

He added: “The event and exhibition industry will be welcomed to the new ADNEC complex and will enjoy the highest levels of customer care and support. It is the goal of the management to provide an experience that reflects the standard of the new venue. We have already confirmed the support of many new and existing international exhibition organisers, who will shortly be announcing their plans for new exhibitions. This has been a very carefully planned project and we are already proud of our progress”.

ADNEC Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr Simon Horgan said: “In any sophisticated exhibition market, organisers of events need a choice of venues. The dynamics within this market have matured and changed. The current policies operated by venues within the UAE determine what exhibitions the organisers are able to stage, and these decisions have established the size and shape of existing market.

“For example, in a dramatically expanding market such as the construction sector, exhibitors and visitors may wish to visit either specialist exhibitions or more than one event per year. If a venue only allows one event each year then the sector is constricted. This is standard international practice. However, within the UAE it is a key indicator that a market has matured and reached a point of expansion. Commentators may conclude that the solution is to expand existing venues but this does not address the fact that international organisers need to compete at different venues and expand the overall market”.

He added: “It is our goal to have a new centre and introduce a new approach to business. There are many innovative ideas that will be developed to set the new ADNEC complex apart – providing our clients with exceptional service and business practices. For example, we will not be competing with our organising customers by staging exhibitions in-house, as this practice discourages investment”.

The location for this centre has been carefully selected: close to the major hotel developments and a short distance from Abu Dhabi Airport. The site is only 35 minutes from Jebel Ali, Dubai. The surrounding road network has been planned to allow for easy access and exit to the centre and multi-storey car parks will provide ample capacity for visitor and exhibitors.

The area surrounding the new centre is scheduled for immediate development and will feature hotels, serviced apartments for 2000 people, 17 office towers, a marina development and a retail zone with over 100 outlets.

As part of the development, the existing Sheikh Zayed Grandstand will be refurbished and linked to the new halls. Within it will be offices, food courts and a range of companies servicing the exhibition industry.

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Sunday, April 30- 2006 @ 17:54 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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