Ali Ahmed Alnaqbi
UAE tops region with 40pc business aviation flights
DUBAI, November 24, 2023
The UAE accounts for about 35% to 40% of business aviation movement in the Middle East and North Africa, making it the largest market in the region, said Ali Ahmed Alnaqbi, Founder and Executive Chairman of the Middle East and North Africa Business Aviation Association (Mebaa).
The number of private or business aircraft operating in the UAE has exceeded 500, while the number of registered aircraft in the country now stands at more than 200, thus posting a significant increase, Alnaqbi was quoted as saying in a Wam report.
He was speaking on the sidelines of the Third Conference on Aviation Alternative Fuels (CAAF/3) of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).
Following the signing of a cooperation agreement between the Mbaa and the General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), Alnaqbi stressed that the agreement aims to solidify their cooperation, promote business and private aviation, and increase the activity of this pivotal sector, with the overall goal of increasing the number of aircraft registered in the UAE or operating from the local market.
He affirmed that the business and private aviation sector plays a key role in the UAE’s aviation system, with the country being a leader in this sector.
The UAE aims to become the primary base and headquarters for business aviation in the entire region, he added.
Alnaqbi explained that the agreement would involve signing some contracts to advance the industry and establish specialist committees in operations, registration, ground handling, and others.
Collaborating with the GCAA is intended to expedite the registration process and make the UAE the main hub for business and private aviation services in the region, including registration and operations, he further added.
Regarding private aviation and adopting alternative fuels in operational processes, Alnaqbi said that business aviation is part of the system promoting sustainable aviation fuel use through the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.
As President of the council, which is based in Canada, Alnaqbi highlighted the commitment of the business and private aviation sector to using sustainable aviation fuel in most private aircraft to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.
He also noted various trials on using sustainable fuel in private aviation, including announcing a Gulfstream G600 aircraft's journey using alternative fuel from the US to Central Europe last month.
Concerning emissions from business and private aviation, Alnaqbi claimed that the percentage is negligible, not exceeding 0.02% of the aviation sector's emissions, generally around 2% of total global emissions.