Technology vital to USD 100 billion Middle East defense spend through 2015
Technology has become a major rallying point that has enabled countries in the Middle East to strengthen their homeland security (HLS) capabilities. According to recent estimates, overall defense spending in the Middle East will hit USD 100 billion by 2015 with the bulk of expenditure expected to be focused on high-technology security systems and other sophisticated homeland security solutions. This is a very important trend that has been evident during the previous edition of the International Security and National Resilience (ISNR) Abu Dhabi, a biennial trade show that serves as the Middle East’s definitive event for homeland security. In its previous edition, the show which has the strong support of the UAE Ministry of Interior, registering an increase of over 48 per cent in exhibitor participation
The 2012 edition of ISNR Abu Dhabi will be held under the patronage of H.H. General Sheikh Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces in association with the Ministry of Interior. It is fully supported by H.H. Lt. General Sheikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior in the United Arab Emirates. The event will take place from March 19 to 21, 2012 at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre.
At the other end of the spectrum, homeland security threats are likewise evolving and becoming even more sophisticated. It is safe to assume that terrorist groups and other international criminal organizations all over the world are equally up-to-date with the latest technology innovations and are constantly seeking ways to undermine homeland security systems. Considering this, it becomes even more important to remain extremely vigilant against emerging security threats and to always keep security systems updated to prevent security breaches and other potential national security issues.
Moreover, with several countries across the Middle East now actively pursuing various high-profile infrastructure projects such as airport expansions, modern transport facilities, large-scale utility projects and special economic zones, it is only natural that security requirements have become even more complex and extensive.
“Nowadays, technology plays a crucial role when addressing homeland security issues. Government expenditure on homeland security has accordingly increased and will continue to surge as part of ongoing efforts to prevent breaches in national security, which could threaten sustained socioeconomic development,” said Mohamad Bader-Eddin, Show Director, Reed Exhibitions, organizers of ISNR Abu Dhabi 2012.
“Obviously, traditional homeland security technologies, techniques and approaches may no longer work against emerging and evolving security threats posed by terrorists and criminal organizations, which are increasingly combining modern technology and conventional tactics to launch a type of hybrid warfare. Against the backdrop of sophisticated security threats, there is no doubt that homeland security companies and related solutions providers will be vital in efforts to suppress the malicious intentions of terrorists and criminal organizations,” added Bader-Eddin.
The latest homeland security solutions that specifically cater to the security requirements of Middle East countries will be on display during the 2012 edition of ISNR Abu Dhabi,. According to the show’s organizers, trade visitors can expect a much wider range of homeland security solutions, concepts and technologies, which can range to the seemingly routine to the more complex security systems.
One of the breakthroughs that are expected to attract strong interest among homeland security professionals is the recent discovery by researchers of the ability of plants to detect environmental contaminants and explosives. In a project funded by a consortium led by the US Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Directorate (DHS S&T), the researchers were able to enable a computer-designed detection trait to work in plants by rewiring the plant’s natural signaling process making it able to detect the contaminants or explosives, which is manifested by the loss of green color.
Homeland security solutions and technologies are also being actively developed within the region with efforts by organizations such as Tawazun Holding, a strategic investment firm involved in the development of Abu Dhabi’s industrial manufacturing and technology sectors and the execution of key knowledge transfers with a specific focus on the defense manufacturing Established in 2007 as a fully owned company of Offset Program Bureau, Tawazun Holding’s mission is to develop profitable ventures through industrial partnerships and strategic investments that add to Abu Dhabi’s industrial manufacturing layer in the areas of defense, defense manufacturing and manufacturing technology.
Several other prominent names in homeland security will also be presenting their latest technology innovations and solutions at ISNR Abu Dhabi 2012, including International Golden Group (IGG), a pioneer in the region’s defense hardware supply market; Abu Dhabi-based Advanced Integrated Systems (AIS), which is regarded as the fastest-growing homeland security company in the world; International Armored Group (IAG), a global leader in the engineering, prototyping and manufacturing of armored cars and trucks and other armored commercial vehicles; and INTERTECH Vision ME, a leading designer and integrator of professional Operation Centers and Control Rooms for specialist markets.
“The upcoming ISNR Abu Dhabi 2012 will provide an ideal networking venue for government representatives and homeland security specialists to interact and discuss various security issues, opportunities and challenges. The event will gather high-level government officials and decision makers who are eager to explore the technological advances that have been made by homeland security specialists over the past two years since the last edition of ISNR Abu Dhabi. It is clear that technology has become a key element that helps determine the homeland security strategies of different countries in the region. Accordingly, ISNR Abu Dhabi 2012 is poised to serve as the definitive venue for the latest technological advances in the critical area of homeland security,” concluded Bader-Eddin.
ISNR Abu Dhabi 2012 will encompass Border and Transport Security; Intelligence and Threat Assessment; Critical Infrastructure Protection; Emergency Preparedness and Response; Counter Terrorism; and Resilience (Crisis Management). The expo expects 250 exhibitors from 30 countries who will present their defense and security solutions to around 12,000 visitors and 60 official delegates from 15 countries.
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