The company behind the US$6.8 billion expansion of Abu Dhabi International Airport is using a new aviation event taking place in the UAE capital next week to showcase its ambitious work to develop the Emirate’s aviation infrastructure.
Khalifa Al Mazrouei, Chairman and Managing Director of the Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC), said the Aviation Procurement Expo (APEX) would give participants first-hand exposure to Abu Dhabi’s plans to become one of the world’s most sophisticated aviation gateways.
The airport expansion scheme will allow passenger traffic to grow beyond 40 million per year from the current seven million, while cargo capacity will be boosted from 150,000 tonnes per year at present to two million tonnes. The project includes construction of a second runway, two new terminals, a state-of-the-art air traffic control complex and expansion of cargo facilities.
APEX, organised by Streamline Marketing Group, takes place from 19 – 21 March in the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre and features a major three-day conference focusing on procurement issues facing modern airlines. The Aviation Procurement and Finance Conference includes speakers from airlines around the world as well as industry experts and consultants. The event will also support ADAC’s airport expansion scheme by gathering nearly 70 top aviation suppliers in an exhibition.
Khalifa Al Mazrouei said: “The Abu Dhabi Airports Company is proud to take part in the Aviation Procurement Expo, APEX 2007. It is indeed a good opportunity to showcase our plans to develop the Emirate’s aviation infrastructure and to interact with key players in the industry. APEX provides a unique opportunity for networking with the world’s aviation suppliers who are keen to capitalize on the huge aviation projects coming up in this part of the world.’
Abu Dhabi International Airport’s second runway is currently under construction and is scheduled for completion by March 2008. The 4,100 metre-long all-weather runway will be able to handle wide-bodied aircraft, including the A380 ‘super-jumbo’.
A third terminal with a capacity of five million passengers per year will be on line by 2008 and is designed to accommodate the growth of Etihad Airways, the UAE’s national airline, until the inauguration of the new Midfield Terminal in 2010. This flagship terminal will bring the airport’s overall capacity to 20 million passengers, which can then be further expanded gradually to 40 million to cope with future growth.
A new 110-metre high air traffic control complex, fitted with the latest navigational and meteorological equipment, is due to be operational by June 2008 and will enable the airport to handle up to 70 takeoffs and landings per hour. Ongoing expansion of cargo facilities will double capacity to 300,000 tonnes per year during the first part of 2007, while a new cargo terminal to be completed by 2009 will boost this figure to 800,000. The masterplan envisions ultimate growth up to two million tonnes. Approximately one million sq metres of land near the new cargo facilities will be allocated for Free Trade Zones.
Al Mazrouei said: “Abu Dhabi International Airport continues to record strong growth in passenger and cargo traffic and is now the focus of a massive $6.8 billion programme of development and expansion that will see it transform into a world-class aviation hub to support Abu Dhabi’s ambitious plans to become a dynamic centre for investment and tourism.”
APEX has been commissioned by the Abu Dhabi Government to support the growth of ADAC, Etihad Airways, the UAE’s national airline, and the Gulf Aircraft Maintenance Company (GAMCO), which was established by the government in 1987. The event takes place under the patronage of H.H. Dr Sheikh Ahmed bin Saif Al Nahyan, Chairman of Etihad Airways and GAMCO.