By Mike Martin

Dubai is investing $82 billion in the aviation sector under the Emirate’s ambitious Strategic Plan 2015, HH Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum said at Paris yesterday.
Sheikh Ahmed, president of Dubai Civil Aviation, says the investments will see the expansion of Dubai’s airport to three times its existing capacity, the creation of what will eventually be the world’s biggest airport, Dubai World Central, and the expansion of the Emirates fleet.

“With Dubai emerging as the regional trade, business and tourism centre, aviation’s role and scope of operations has acquired new significance,” he said. “While Dubai currently handles in the vicinity of 30 million passengers annually, up to 60m passengers, including 15m tourists, are expected by 2010.

“Investments in tourism, hospitality, leisure and entertainment projects under construction in Dubai exceed $365bn, the number of visitors to Dubai will rise dramatically over the next few years.” Keystone projects are the $4.5bn expansion of the existing airport increasing capacity from 25m passengers a year to 75m by 2009.

The $33bn Dubai World Central with eventually have a capacity of 120m passengers a year. The first of six runways at the new airport will be ready in October this year.
Dubai has moved into the aerospace business with the creation of Dubai Aerospace Enterprise Sheikh Ahmed said. “What we are witnessing in Dubai is the beginning of a new era of global aviation. “We are witnessing the birth of the world’s new aviation hub.”

Source: Flight Daily News