GE took off at Global Aerospace Summit 2012
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) recently disclosed that air carriers in the Middle East led the aviation industry in traffic growth at the beginning of this year. The Middle East was the only region among all markets that recorded a double-digit growth and regional airlines recorded a 14.5 per cent year-on-year increase.
Since the regional aviation industry is witnessing unprecedented growth clearly highlighted by the new orders for aircraft and investments in aviation infrastructure, it comes as no surprise that the inaugural Global Aerospace Summit 2012 took place in Abu Dhabi.
GE was one of the main sponsors of the Summit that was a gathering of global industry leaders discussing future growth strategies. An exclusive interactive forum, this invitation-only summit brought together over 300 national and international executives from across the aerospace, aviation and space sectors to discuss pertinent issues in the industry.
The Global Aerospace Summit incorporated three themes: aerospace, aviation and space, and was complemented by panel sessions and closed door discussions.
Bill Fitzgerald, vice president and general manager, Commercial Engines Operation, at GE Aviation participated in a panel that discussed how customers could control the life cycle costs of their engines and aircraft.
Airlines are looking for ways to reduce their operating costs. The discussion at the Summit covered strategies to manage the maintenance costs on aircraft and engines as well as how next-generation products are designed to improve fuel efficiency and lower customer’s cost of ownership. Representatives from Airbus, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft, Safran, Aernnova and Aerolia were others on the panel.
GE Aviation along with its joint venture companies, CFM International and the Engine Alliance, have amassed engine and services orders valued at more than US$13 billion at the 2011 Dubai Air Show, of which more than half – nearly $7bn – were signed by leading airlines in the Middle East region, notably, the UAE.
Of the more than $13bn in deals, Emirates accounted for $6bn. Other airline partners in the region include Air Arabia, Etihad Airways, Royal Jordanian, Qatar Airways, Jazeera Airways, Oman Air and Saudi Arabian, among others. Also, GE Aviation has joined hands with Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Development Company to expand GE’s global network of engine maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) providers in the Middle East, which is expected to be fully operational shortly.