Saudi Arabia to host airport exhibition in November and boost aviation expansion plans

Industry experts will meet to explore growth potential of the industry in the kingdom

New Riyadh Airport Terminal. Photo: Niche Ideas
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Aviation leaders and industry experts are set to flock to Riyadh for the Saudi Airport Exhibition, which coincides with the Future Airport Development Summit in November.

Saudi Arabia has earmarked $147 billion to enhance its airport facilities to serve 330 million air travellers by 2030, expand its transport sector and boost plans to launch a new national airline alongside the established Saudia, Flynas and Flyadeal.

The exhibition will be held at Al Faisaliah Hotel from November 7-8. Industry experts will get together to explore the potential of the kingdom, which has witnessed vast growth with new tourism policies in line with the Saudi Vision 2030.

Saudi Arabia this year announced the privatisation of its airports' ownership, with 29 hubs currently being prepared for the process. Plans for a new international airport in Riyadh are afoot, while the Harmonising Air Travel policy is expected to generate around $100bn in aviation investment.

Saudi Arabia is the Middle East’s largest aviation market and is where the fastest passenger traffic growth in the Middle East is expected, until 2040 at the earliest.

The National Aviation Sector Strategy aims to increase travel routes to 250 destinations, cater to 330 million passengers and double air cargo capacity to 4.5 million tonnes.

The travel sector aims to generate 280 billion riyals ($75bn) for Saudi Arabia’s gross domestic product by 2030.

Daksha Patel is event director at Niche Ideas, the company which is organising the event. She said: “Saudi Airport Exhibition will provide the ideal platform for Saudi airports and stakeholders to meek global industry suppliers and experts to fulfil the kingdom’s ambitious aviation expansion programmes."

Saudi Arabia boosts tourism credentials

She said Saudi Arabia was one the most exciting aviation markets in the world, given its focus on sustainability, passenger experience, international collaboration and the number of new aviation jobs it will create.

The event will host more than 100 leading global participants with expertise in airport operations, infrastructure, air traffic control, ground handling, security, retail and investment, from more than 20 countries.

Saudi Arabia this month approved a law to boost the development of the tourism sector in the Arab world’s largest economy, attract more investment and increase visitor numbers.

The new tourism law will “drive business and investment, support innovation and attract tourists, in line with international best practices”, Tourism Minister Ahmed Al Khateeb said.

Updated: August 30, 2022, 1:59 PM
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