Dubai poised to set new record for summer air passengers

Top official says Dubai airport numbers set to soar between July-December despite concern over crowded skies
Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, president of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority (DCAA) and chairman of Dubai Airports. (KARIM SAHIB/AFP/Getty Images)
By Staff writer
Thu 13 Jul 2017 01:10 PM

Dubai is set to witness a record high passenger numbers at airports this summer, beating the 22.4 million passengers it welcomed between July and September last year.

Last year's passenger traffic in July was 14 percent higher compared to previous year but Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, president of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority (DCAA) and chairman of Dubai Airports, expects even more this year.

“This year, we expect passenger numbers to surpass last year numbers,” he said in his message in the latest issue of Via Dubai, the official monthly publication of the DCAA.

Sheikh Ahmed said Dubai’s aviation sector sees the peak season as a challenge and an opportunity to "offer unmatchable services and passenger experience".

He added that the use of latest smart technologies, such as Emirates ID at smart gates, is enabling passengers to speed through passport control within a few seconds.

In a separate interview to Via Dubai, Khalid Al Arif, executive director, Aviation Safety & Environment Sector, DCAA, said crowded skies are a major challenge not only for the UAE and Middle East alone, due to the rise in demand for air travel.

He said a system similar to Eurocontrol, which brings together European nations for effective air traffic management, would enable countries in the Middle East to tackle this challenge effectively.

“There is also a future requirement for countries in the Middle East Region to adopt and undertake a system similar to the Eurocontrol system where all the countries collaborated to become one airspace region," he said.

"This would increase capacity, decrease delays and be more efficient in terms of environment with less holding for aircraft and more direct routings."

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