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aviation BRIEFING


“akbar al baker was said to have ‘humiliated’ airbus with his choice language as he attacked the plane maker for delayed production. ”


GE Aviation won $14 billion of engine


orders at the show, some $6 billion of it devoted to the supply and maintenance, repair and overhaul [MRO] of the GE90- 115B engines to be installed on the new Emirates 777-300 ER jets. The other eye-opening deal to emerge


from the air show involved the tactics of Qatar Airways chief, Akbar Al Baker, in facing down Airbus in negotiations over pricing for a its A320neo order. In the end, he chose 50 A320neos, with five A380s thrown in, at list prices of $6.4 billion, and was said to have “humiliated” Airbus with choice language referring to delays in the A350 programme. In addition, Florida-based Spirit Airlines signed a deal for 45 A320neos and 30 A320s worth $6.8 billion. The MRO market in the region looks set to boom with several players hoping to cash in on the boom in regional civil aviation. Emirates Group signed a long- term leadership training agreement with Rolls-Royce, allowing Emirates’ top UAE national managers to take part in Rolls-Royce’s leadership and business management development programme in the United Kingdom. Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala is already an established player in aviation through several joint ventures, including wholly- owned Abu Dhabi Aviation Technologies in the capital, and a 70 per cent stake in Zurich-based SR Technics. The Advanced Military Maintenance Repair and Overhaul Centre (AMMROC) is a joint venture for defence aircraft MRO with Sikorsky, to which Lockheed Martin entered in January.


Aviation lease and finance company


ALAFCO of Kuwait increased its order for A320neos to 50 from the 30 originally signed at the Paris Air Show in summer. Airbus said the value of the deal at list price was $4.6 billion. The company also took out options on 30 more. It also completed the transfer of six Dreamliners to Oman Air. On day five, the Air Show was inundated by 700 Emirati students from UAE colleges and universities sporting colourful scarves and regalia sampling the atmosphere of the show in a ‘Futures Day’ designed to underline the appeal of careers in the aviation industry. With a 25-country office network


already in existence, Aircraft broker CB Aviation announced the opening of a new office in Dubai, and named Saeed Al Mansouri as its vice president for the Middle East and Africa. “We are focusing efforts on these regions, which, according to global statistics, will see growth rates in local tourism and aviation touching 20 per cent of global figures,” Al Mansouri said. “It is said that the volume of investment in projects in the Middle East will exceed $330 billion over the coming years.” Dubai Airport Expo is to be demolished


to make way for another terminal at Dubai International and the Dubai Air Show 2013 will take place at Dubai World Central in Jebel Ali. Sheikh Ahmed confirmed that Middle East Business Aviation 2012 will also take place at the new Jebel Ali complex. With the two events now alternating each autumn, Dubai has firmly established itself as one of the world’s leading market places for


Akbar Al Baker, CEO of Qatar Airways


the aviation industry. With a fourth major terminal facility under construction at Dubai International, the relocation of the air show looks set to offer the government of Dubai the option to build a fifth at Dubai International. Looking ahead, the contrast between Chapter 11 bankruptcy rumours among US carriers and the inexorable ascent of the Gulf carriers could not be starker. Congestion and red tape are not making life for the European carriers any easier either, and governments looking to be on the take from passenger activity in the form of ticket taxes and environmental charges are only making the struggle more difficult. “This is nothing short of a major


re-alignment of market shares and of economics of both scale and capacity use, since the new mega airports in the Gulf area suffer no flying restrictions, allowing the best utilisation of the newest and most technologically-advanced fleets found anywhere in the world,” wrote Dr. Wolfgang Thome in a report for ETN published last month.


GULF BUsiNEss / 35


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