Massive growth in the global business aviation market is driving exhibitor sign-up at this year’s Middle East Business Aviation (MEBA) show, according to organiser Fairs and Exhibitions.

The global bizjet fleet is predicted to expand by 39,000 aircraft over the next 20 years, and much of the growth will come from the region.

“The Middle East is reaping the rewards of rising oil prices and increased liquidity and is emerging as one of the fastest growing business aviation markets in the world,” says Alison Weller, director of F&E Aerospace, which runs many of the region’s top aerospace exhibitions.

“We recently returned from EBACE, where interest in MEBA was phenomenal,” says Weller. “Company sign-up for MEBA was given a major boost from the continent’s business aviation players there, and we expect many new exhibitors to make their Middle East debut this year,”

“All eyes are on the Middle East market at the moment, and for good reason. The global business aviation sector is undergoing some interesting transformations as it becomes more diverse in terms of geographic distribution and breadth of aircraft capability,” Weller says.

This year’s show will display up to 70 aircraft on the dedicated static park, covering a wide range of models including Dassault, Boeing and Bombardier, plus Cessna will be bringing a full scale mock-up of its new large cabin concept Columbus. There is also suggestion that Gulfstream may bring the full scale mock-up of the new G650.

Visitor numbers are tipped to smash last year’s record with more than 5,000 expected to attend, which includes the number of new-to-market exhibitors who will be attending for the first time. “We will definitely see increased exhibitor participation from The Americas, Scandinavia, and Asia,” says Weller.

MEBA will take place at the Dubai Airport Expo from November 16th-18, 2008.

Source: Flight International