Organised by Air Arabia in association with CNBC Arabia and the American University of Sharjah, The Arab Aviation and Media Summit 2012 brought together industry experts and regional media to discuss the growth of the Arab aviation sector and how it has led to increased mobility in the wider MENA region.
Speakers included H.E. Omar Bin Ghaleb, Deputy Director General, Department of Civil Aviation Authority, UAE; Dr. Peter Heath, Chancellor, American University of Sharjah; Mr. Abdul Wahab Tefaha, Secretary General, Arab Air Carriers Organization (AACO); Mr. Fouad Attar, President, Airbus Middle East; Dr. Majdi Sabri, Regional VP, IATA and Mr. Chris Taylor, VP at Spectrum Capital UK and Mr. Adel Ali, Group Chief Executive Officer, Air Arabia.
The panel of experts discussed key challenges faced by the industry and the role of aviation in emerging economies as well as the impact of Arab Spring on the regional aviation sector. According to event participants, oil price fluctuation, lack of true open skies policy, and the impact of Arab Spring represent real challenges for regional air carriers, especially those who operate intra-Arab services. Additionally, the experts have placed a greater emphasis on the need for increased skilled and trained manpower availability in the Middle East aviation industry.
H.E Omar Bin Ghaleb,, Mr. Adel Ali and Dr. Peter Heath shed light on the rapid growth of the aviation sector in the region and stated that “The Middle East is in a very advantageous position. Examples can be taken from experiences of other parts of the world, and see which are the correct steps to take, and which to avoid. Opening the industry here to increased private investment is a step in the right direction; timing it properly will require careful analysis and guidance.”
The only difficulty, according to participants in the Arab Aviation and Media Summit, is finding the impetus to make it happen.”
Tuesday, May 1- 2012 @ 9:27 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.