The U.S.-U.A.E. Business Council convened a breakfast roundtable discussion this morning at Dubai South’s new VIP terminal to introduce U.S. companies attending the Dubai Airshow to business opportunities in Dubai South, specifically in its aviation and logistics districts.
Danny Sebright, President of the U.S.-U.A.E. Business Council, opened the event by welcoming Business Council members and guests to Dubai South’s VIP terminal. He also thanked His Excellency Majid Al-Suwaidi, U.A.E. Consul General in New York, and Saud Al Nowais, U.A.E. Commercial Counselor in Washington, D.C., for joining in the event.
Justin Wilshaw, Senior Vice President of Commercial for Dubai South, outlined Dubai’s plans to become the “aviation capital of the world.” He noted that aviation currently comprises 28% of Dubai’s GDP and logistics another 14%. By 2030, this combined figure is expected to grow to 50%. Moreover, Mr. Wilshaw added that Dubai is uniquely positioned to help companies access emerging markets in Africa and South Asia. Africa alone will see its consumer middle class grow to 600 million people in the next five years.
Within this context, Mr. Wilshaw reviewed Dubai South’s integrated aerotropolis masterplan, which consists of eight integrated districts. These districts are centered on Al Maktoum International Airport, which will become the largest airport in the world with an anticipated 220 million passengers per year.
From L to R: Danny Sebright, President of the U.S.-U.A.E. Business Council; His Excellency Majid Al-Suwaidi, U.A.E. Consul General in New York; Justin Wilshaw, Senior Vice President for Commercial at Dubai South; Mohammad Al Falasi, Director of Business Development at Dubai South; and Saud Al Nowais, U.A.E. Commercial Counselor in Washington, D.C.
Mohammad Al Falasi, Director of Business Development at Dubai South, subsequently delved deeper into Dubai’s South’s creation of an integrated aviation ecosystem. He focused on the opportunities this ecosystem provides for small and large companies involved in MRO; general aviation; education and training; and commercial projects, such as retail and hotels.
During his remarks, Mr. Al Falasi stressed how keen Dubai South is to bring U.S. companies to this development. He observed that many aviation products in the U.A.E. are American, but non-American companies maintain them.
Following these presentations, Mr. Wilshaw and Mr. Al Falasi answered a series of questions from the attendees in which they reviewed Dubai South’s success to date in meeting its stated objectives as well as its partnership with Expo 2020 Dubai, which will take place in Dubai South and benefit from its aviation and logistical support.