Regional Vice-President, Sales, Middle East & Africa, Bombardier Business Aircraft
President, Airbus Middle East
HABIB FEKIH We will be focusing on the A320neo and A350 XWB, because we believe this to be the aircraft needed in the region. Of course, we will continue with the A380, too. This is obvious—it is our iconic product, and we will be pushing it hard. Of course, we still have the A330, too. People thought it would fade away, but in 2013 we sold 77 of them. For an aircraft that is “dying,” we are still producing it and people are buying it. It is a miracle. In 2014, we have to deliver our first A380 to Qatar, as well as the first A350 ever in the world. This is the first delivery, and it is to be made to Qatar in 2014.
KHADER MATTAR We have undertaken part of the training work for Dubai Airport, which has been a promising development. We are also working on projects beyond Dubai, and are active in almost every country in the region. There are over 30 countries covered out of this office, including Turkey. We are extending our relationships and partnerships with distributors across 28 countries in the Middle East. Companies we work with as Authorized Service Facilities in our vast network include Qatar Executive, Arab Wings in Jordan, ExecuJet based out of Dubai, and recently ARABASCO, which is a maintenance provider based out of Saudi Arabia. We also enjoy strong links with our customers, and together control a 25% market share in the Middle East. Recently, we also expanded our local spare parts depot by moving it to Transworld Aviation’s facility in the Jebel Ali Free Zone area.
HF We have subsidiary called ProSky, which is dedicated to the development and support of modern air traffic management (ATM) systems globally. The goal is to achieve the highest operational efficiencies with more direct routes, resulting in around 10% less aircraft fuel consumption and significant reductions in CO2 and noise emissions. Airbus is interacting with, and helping to develop, ATM programs such as Single European Sky ATM Research (SESAR) in Europe, and NextGen in the US. A major Airbus ProSky goal is to accelerate the implementation of both systems and link them together to capitalize on technological and operational synergies. The number of aircraft to be absorbed in the region will depend on Al Maktoum International Airport and also on the restructuring. This will be our challenge for the next five years, and we are here to help them by all means through all of our companies.
KM Apart from our services and products, our strength lies in our people. Bombardier has a truly international team, which tends to separate us from our competition. In addition, we have our local service providers in the Middle East and Africa. We differentiate ourselves from the competition because we have local partners providing services for local customers. These partners invest in facilities and spare parts in order to be able to provide a more comprehensive range of services. We employ 28 people today in the Middle East, but we are still expanding our operations. In 2014, the figure may rise above 30 employees. We have not experienced any difficulty in sourcing professionals in the UAE given the expatriate community and the standard of living that appeals to many.
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