MEBAA blazes a trail for business aviation

Since the pandemic, the Gulf region has been at the forefront of advances in business aviation. Now, the Middle East and North Africa Business Aviation Association (MEBAA Show) will demonstrate why.

MEBAA Show 2022
MEBAA Show 2022

Business aviation and private flying is bouncing back. In the first half of this year, it was up by 22% over the same period last year.

There were 2.7 million flights globally, with business jet activity, in particular, up 27% year-on-year and 21% above pre-pandemic 2019 levels.

While Europe has seen a surge in activity, with nearly 300,000 business jet flights in the first half of the year – a 38% increase – it is the GCC region that has really blossomed.

The global private jet market is projected to reach $39.84 billion in 2025 from an estimated $25.87 billion in 2021, with the GCC representing a major part of that growth. Driven by advances in infrastructure and technology, the industry is also welcoming back business aviation events, and from December 6-8, all eyes will be on Dubai World Central (DWC) for the ninth MEBAA Show edition.

“It is an exciting time for business aviation globally and multiple factors are leading to a surge in demand,” said Ali Alnaqbi, MEBAA’s founding and executive chairman.

“The MEBAA Show will gather industry leaders from across the globe to lay out the roadmap for business aviation in the future. The event will showcase new innovation and technology that is driving significant growth in business aviation, private jet, and the charter flight markets.”

The three-day event, organised by Tarsus F&E, will, as ever, be a platform for networking opportunities and interactive sessions on the latest trends. Visitors and exhibitors will also enjoy a redesigned immersive show floor with everything from new high-tech and ultra-luxurious jets, through to blockchain-based assets, and electric vertical take-off and landing vehicles (eVTOLs). 

“At this year's edition we’re also introducing BizAv Talks, which will provide three days of immersive discussions on everything you need to know about business aviation from top industry experts,” said Alnaqbi.

New features also include the future focus – showcasing everything from eVTOLs to sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) and artificial intelligence (AI) to blockchain.

The operator's programme is new dedicated opportunity for exhibitors to network with hand-selected regional and international operators.

There will also be the static display and, while the list was not totally confirmed as Arabian Aerospace was going to press, more than 50 aircraft were expected with Comlux displaying its VIP flagship Skylady.

Tarsus has already confirmed attendees from more than 30 countries, which includes new international and regional exhibitors like Aerospace Jet, Aerospace Aviation Services, First Class Aviation Services, and International Flight Landing Solutions. UAS International Trip Support will again be at the MEBAA Show.

Mohammed Al Husary, co-owner, founder, and executive president said: “I think this year’s MEBAA Show will have an extra layer of significance, as it follows a period of global chaos and the challenge the pandemic brought to the industry.

“As a MEBAA board member, I see first-hand the commitment and drive of the organisation to advance the interest of the industry in the region. The pandemic taught us the importance of business aviation and how powerful it can be when other forms of transport are totally restricted; we should never regret this going forward.”

The upcoming FIFA Football World Cup will also see an increase in business jet travel in the region. DC Aviation Al-Futtaim (DCAF) reports a demand for private jets during the event but is looking forward to attending the MEBAA Show first.

Managing director, Holger Ostheimer, said: “The MEBAA Show is undoubtedly the region’s premier business and private aviation event. It offers us a good platform to showcase our facilities and unique offerings, from our VVIP lounge to our state-of-the-art hangars and everything in between. We look forward to reconnecting with our partners and industry peers from all over the world.”

Marcelle (Ella) Nethersole

Marcelle (Ella) Nethersole

Ella is a news editor for digital news channels including Arabian Aerospace, African Aerospace and Times Aerospace TV.