15 Muharram 1446 - 21 July 2024
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Eye of Riyadh
Tourism & Hospitality | Thursday 2 May, 2024 4:01 pm |

Global Airport Leaders’ Forum (GALF-2024) to sharply focus on Passenger Experiences, Digitalization, and Emerging Technologies

The 10th edition of Global Airport Leaders’ Forum (GALF), one of the three co-located events of the 23rd  edition of Airport Show at the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) in mid-May, will have focused deliberations on key topics including Passenger Experience,  Digitalization, Innovation, Emerging Technologies, Manpower Development, Airport Security and Air Traffic Management (ATM). 


For three days from May 14, the leading annual event dedicated to the Middle East, Africa and South Asia’s airport industry is set to provide unparalleled networking and business opportunities through the co-located events - the ATC Forum, Airport Security Middle East, and the GALF. The much-anticipated B2B event will have the participation of over 150 exhibitors from more than 20 countries along with 6000+ visitors from over 30 countries. 


Present will be top airport developers, officials, and suppliers from across the world as the contours of airport business and operations undergo tectonic changes to handle global passengers numbering 8.2 billion annually by 20237 as predicted by the International Air Transport Association (IATA). Investments by airports globally have been estimated to reach US$2.4 trillion in 2040. 


A beacon of innovation and efficiency, the Smart Airports market alone is poised to achieve a remarkable valuation of US$10.16 billion by 2030. The global aviation leaders and key regional airport decision-makers will have threadbare discussions on pertinent topics including aviation sustainability, global collaboration, Advanced Air Mobility (AAM), new technologies and innovations, and the prospects of the airport industry’s boom in the coming future. 


The aviation market in the Middle East, a region with over 110 airports in 22 countries, had been valued at US$60 billion in 2023, and the region will need to invest US$151 billion in capacity expansion as air passenger keeps soaring rapidly. The Middle East airports are set to handle 1.1 billion passengers by 2040, with the Middle East and Asia-Pacific regions scheduled to account for 58 percent of the global air passenger demand in 2040. 


The CAPA - Centre for Aviation has listed the total numbers of the airport project and the volume of investment in the Middle East currently standing at 155 with a worth of US$209.4 billion. Passenger traffic worldwide is expected to reach 19.3 billion in 2041 and 23.9 billion in 2050. In 2041, airports are predicted to handle almost 200 million tons of air cargo worldwide. Airports worldwide will see 153.8 million aircraft movements by 2041.


The agenda-driven Global Airport Leaders Forum (GALF) will take place against the backdrop of massive investments either getting executed or planned in the Middle Eastern countries until 2030 – and beyond. Air transport currently supports 3.3 million jobs and US$213 billion in its economic activity or 7.6 percent of all GDP in the region. 


Confirmed speakers include Ibrahim Ahli, Acting CEO of Dubai Air Navigation Services (dans), Abdullah Alshamsi, Senior Director of Future of Things, Dubai Aviation Engineering Projects (DAEP), Sheikh Aimen bin Ahmed Al Hosni, CEO of Oman Airports Management Company, Ayman Abdulaziz AboAbah, CEO, Riyadh Airports Company, Dr. Rolf Castro-Vasquez, COO, Budapest International Airport, and Kashif Khalid, Regional Director for Africa & Middle East Operations, Safety & Security at  International Air Transport Association (IATA). 


The other speakers are Carlo Loveri, Head of Risk and BCM at Abu Dhabi Airports, Alpros Mohammad Hamzouq, Director for Quality, Safety, and Risk Management at Airport International Group (AIG), Csilla Orczan, Head of Ground Handling Management at Budapest Airport, Navaid Ahsan, Head of Aviation Security Operations at Aviation Security Department of Etihad Airways, Afsheen Faiz, Deputy Director of Air Traffic Services at Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority, Ahmed Isam, Head of Training at Fujairah Air Navigation Services (FANS) and Amthal Akroush, Director of Airport Security at Airport International Group (AIG).


May Ismail, Event Manager at RX, a global company that organizes over 400 events in 22 countries across 43 industry sectors including Airport Show, said this year’s event has become of high importance for the decision-makers as the airports undergo massive transformation to meet the new thinking and expectations of passengers about services and facilities for them at the airport and in the air. 


“Several emerging technologies are consistently revolutionizing airport experience and helping enhance operations and efficiency. Helping the rapid change process and transformation to handle security, safety, and cyber threats are the newest innovations in Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), blockchain, Internet of Things (IoT), and Biometrics,” she remarked. The whole purpose behind hosting the knowledge-sharing platform to help “create airports where passengers feel safe, valued, and engaged and experience a seamless travel experience.”




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