Gulfstream has a fleet of over 100 business aircraft owned and operated in the Arabian Gulf region, with both Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) representing strong customer basses in the large-cabin market.
After more than two years of negotiation, the governments of the United Kingdom and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have agreed new terms covering the delivery of 48 Typhoon fighters. Under the original 2007 Project Salam contract, Saudi Arabia ordered 72 Typhoons, with BAE Systems acting as lead company for the Eurofighter consortium. The first 24 aircraft were delivered without issue, but the remaining 48 aircraft became the subject of debate.
AJW Group has appointed Michael Duncan as its regional director for Africa. Duncan will be responsible for developing the company’s presence and establishing partnerships with operators who need integrated aircraft support services. Previously Duncan was responsible for aviation projects in the Sudan, Comoros, Republic of Equatorial Guinea, South Africa and Saudi Arabia.
The Middle East Business Aviation Association (MEBAA) plans to draft policies and procedures that will provide baseline regulations for business aviation in the UAE and Saudi Arabia at the Middle East Business Aviation Conference, which will be held in Dubai just before the Middle East Business Aviation (MEBA) show from Dec. 8 to 10 next year. MEBAA founding chairman Ali Al Naqbi said the introduction of these policies and procedures had been on the association’s agenda for some time.
The recently appointed head of Saudi Arabia-based luxury charter firm Saudia Private Aviation (SPA) said Middle East charter demand growth stood at 8 percent this year, exceeding the worldwide industry figure, but behind Russia, India and the Asia Pacific region.
Faisal G. Kayal, managing director of SPA, said the region is witnessing “strong economic growth.” Kayal replaced Wajdi Al Idrissi, the former head of the company, in May.
Thirty students from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia have gone to Canada to train to become air traffic controllers as part of an agreement between Nav Canada and Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation. The students expect to complete all their required training at the Nav Centre, described by Nav Canada as its world-class training and conferencing facility in Cornwall, Ontario.
Ali Al Naqbi, founding chairman of the Middle East Business Aviation Association (MEBAA), a key figure in the development of business aviation in the region, confirmed recently that the MEBA 2014 Show will take place at the new Dubai World Central Expo site, where the current Dubai Airshow is taking place.
The International Council of Aircraft Owner and Pilot Associations (IAOPA) has approved Jordan as its 72nd affiliate, making it the seventh IAOPA Middle Eastern affiliate after Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Turkey, Israel and Egypt. “From an IAOPA and global general aviation perspective, we are excited to see GA take root in the Middle East and for governments there to recognize its economic importance,” said IAOPA secretary general Craig Spence.
On the eve of the Paris air show the Longbow joint venture comprised of Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman announced that it had received a contract to provide Longbow fire control radars (FCRs) for the AH-64E Apache Guardians (formerly AH-64D Block III) that have been ordered by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The $90.6 million contract covers FCRs for the Royal Saudi Land Forces Aviation Command and the Saudi Arabia National Guard, as well as mast-mounted assemblies for the U.S. Army. Spares and support is also included in the Saudi element.
The Middle East Business Aviation Association plans to hold frequent regional conferences to stay attuned to its members. Its Middle East Business Aviation Conferences (MEBAC) will be held about four times a year in different countries throughout the Middle East and North Africa. The inaugural MEBAC will be held on June 4 at the Hilton Hotel in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Follow-on regional conferences will be held in Morocco on October 8, Dubai on November 17 and Bahrain on January 15.