Dubai plans to invest AED300 billion ($81.68 billion) in the emirate’s aviation sector by 2015 with the aim of making it the world’s aviation and logistics hub, Arabian Business quoted Emirates Group chairman Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum as saying.
Speaking during a press conference at the Paris Air Show, Sheikh Ahmed, who is also president of Dubai Department of Civil Aviation (DCA), said the massive investment would see Dubai International Airport almost triple its passenger capacity and double its cargocapacity.
Dubai currently handles around 30 million passengers annually, but Sheikh Ahmed revealed that the $4.5 billion expansion of Dubai International Airport currently underway would allow it to handle up to 70 million passengers a year when work is completed in 2009. The expasion will also increase the airport’s annual cargo capacity to 1.4 million tonnes, he said, adding that this part of the project would be fi nished by the end of this year.
The $81.68 billion investment will also fund construction of Dubai World Central, to be the biggest airport in the world, and an almost doubling of Emirates’ fl eet of aircraft from 100 to 180, he said. Sheikh Ahmed’s comments come on the back of a number of major deals announced at the ParisAir Show by Dubai companies.
Earlier this week Emirates signed a letter of intent with European aircraft manufacturer Airbus for eight additional A380s, worth an estimated $2.6 billion. The deal brings to 55 the total number of A380 double-decker aircraft that Emirates has on order.