By Andy Sambidge
Dubai Airports chairman sees recovery after two years of 'unprecedented turbulence'.
Dubai is ready to be at the forefront of the upturn in the global aviation industry and is "open to ideas" on future partnerships, a top official has said.
Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, president of Dubai Department of Civil Aviation and chairman of Dubai Airports, admitted the last two years had seen "unprecedented turbulence" but added that the UAE was prepared to lead the recovery.
In a welcome address to the 11th Dubai Air Show on Sunday, Sheikh Ahmed said: "We are open to ideas: we are ready to work with companies in partnership."
Sheikh Ahmed described the air show, which runs until November 19, as timely and on the cusp of a business upturn, news agency WAM reported.
"The airshow comes at an important time for the aerospace industry as the world begins to see a revival in fortunes," he said.
"During the past two years, the business has experienced unprecedented turbulence. However, I am very pleased that many of the organisations at the show this year were among those that continued to invest in the industry during the worst of times.
"It is the Middle East - and the GCC in particular - that has seen a growth in air transport, while elsewhere there have been falling passenger numbers.
"It is in the Gulf that we have seen launch customer deliveries of some of the finest business jets. It is Middle Eastern carriers that have been leading the way with the introduction of new cabin and in-flight communication technologies.
"It is also in this region that we see the greatest investment in ground infrastructure, such as airports and air sraffic management systems."
Dubai Air Show 2009 is being seen as a weathervane for the aviation industry and has attracted 890 exhibitors from 47 countries.