UAS recently marked its 21st anniversary, a terrific milestone for our organization; but we are not alone in celebrating historic years in 2021. This is also the year that the Middle East Business Aviation Association (MEBAA) is marking 15 years in operation and the Dubai Airport Free Zone (DAFZA) celebrates its 25th year. This makes me reflect on the importance of these pillars of the aviation community, both in the Middle East and beyond.
MEBAA has been central to business aviation’s advances in this region since its establishment 15 years ago. Since then, it has grown to embrace 270 member companies across the Middle East. Its tireless advocacy and representation of the industry’s interests and benefits have contributed hugely to its success over the years. I’m extremely proud to be a board member because I can put my passion and expertise to good use by serving the industry as a whole.
DAFZA has been home to UAS’ Middle East headquarters for over 20 years and – as home to more than 1,800 companies – it is one of the fastest-growing free zones in the region. DAFZA has been a great support to organizations during the unprecedented challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Its leadership and pragmatic optimism were just what was needed at a difficult time. In 2020, it launched 22 initiatives to accelerate economic recovery from the pandemic as well as make great efforts to improve its sustainability by significantly reducing carbon dioxide emissions, power consumption, and water consumption. A wonderful achievement in far from ideal times.
There is no doubt that unity is critical to longevity, survival, and success in any industry. This is as important as definite leadership and practical support. Being part of a community of organizations that share similar values and objectives for the future of their sector is critical to paving the way to a better, stronger future.
(Pictured are Mohammed Al Husary, UAS Executive President, Ali Alnaqbi, Founding & Executive Chairman of MEBAA, and Omar Hosari, UAS CEO.)
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