11th Arab Aviation Summit advocates strategic investments in aviation future, ET TravelWorld

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The 11th edition of the Arab Aviation Summit (AAS) concluded in Ras Al Khaimah, highlighting the imperative for strategic investments in technology, sustainability, and a skilled workforce to ensure the aviation industry’s resilience and growth in the face of evolving challenges.

Themed ‘Exploring the Future of Travel’, the two-day summit brought together key stakeholders from the aviation and tourism sectors to deliberate on pressing issues and opportunities shaping the Middle East aviation market, known for its rapid expansion.

Discussions at the summit revolved around sustainable growth, technological innovations, and the role of aviation in economic development. Participants emphasized the importance of Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) in steering the industry towards a greener future and addressed the critical need to bridge the skills gap amid soaring travel demands.

Day 1 focused on emerging technologies driving aviation transformations and the potential for advanced air mobility to enhance tourism experiences in the MENA region. Additionally, experts underscored the influential role of Middle Eastern airlines in setting global trends and reshaping consumer travel behavior.

Raki Phillips, CEO, Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority, highlighted Ras Al Khaimah’s emergence as a tourism hotspot, attributing its success to investments in air connectivity, tourism infrastructure, and sustainability initiatives. He emphasized the significance of the Unified GCC Tourist Visa in promoting seamless travel experiences.

ATM 2024 to focus on India’s outbound tourism potential, over 30% Indian travellers choose to visit Middle East destinations

Recent data reveals that over 30 per cent of Indian travellers prefer Middle East destinations, with the UAE and Saudi Arabia topping the list. India stands as Dubai’s primary source market, with 1.9 million visitors recorded in the first 10 months of 2023. Saudi Arabia, on the other hand, aims to welcome 7.5 million visitors by 2030.

Adel Ali, CEO, Air Arabia, stressed the aviation and tourism industry’s pivotal role in economic growth and job creation, calling for collaborative efforts to address sustainability challenges. Abdul Wahab Teffaha, Secretary General of the Arab Air Carriers Organisation, underscored the need for supportive policies and digitalisation to foster industry resilience.Julia Simpson, President & CEO, World Travel & Tourism Council, urged stakeholders to prioritise sustainability and regulatory frameworks conducive to sustainable aviation. The panel also discussed the importance of aircraft leasing in driving sectoral growth and financial flexibility.

Hosted in collaboration with Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority and supported by global industry partners, AAS 2024 provided a platform for dialogue and collaboration to navigate the aviation industry’s future challenges and opportunities.

  • Published On Mar 3, 2024 at 02:36 PM IST

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