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Dubai launches $15bn bid to create all-inclusive aerospace company

Dubai’s government and six local partners is to invest $15 billion over the next 10 year to create an aerospace company which could be active in fields including: airport construction and development; aircraft leasing and assembly; engine and component manufacturing; maintenance and aerospace training.

The new holding company Dubai Aerospace Enterprise (DAE) aims to establish “an integrated aerospace industry cluster”, although it will initially focus on three specific areas: global airport development and operations; aircraft leasing and finance; and aerospace education and training.

Later the firm plans to add maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO), component and engine manufacturing and assembly and, eventually, Dubai-based final aircraft completion to its portfolio. DAE is also considering space services, aircraft brokerage, aviation media and events and aviation IT systems.

Defining itself as a “global aerospace manufacturing and services corporation”, DAE says it is hoping to benefit from the boom in Middle East aviation, as well as developments in China and India. The company expects the venture to create 30,000 direct and 5,000 indirect jobs by 2015.

DAE chairman Sheik Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum (also president of the Dubai airwothiness body and chairman of Emirates Airlines) says: “Within 10 years, DAE will become an integral part of the global aerospace industry and a leading player. We are putting down a marker for the future.”

The company’s ownership will be evenly split between its seven founders, four of which are finance firms. These include Islamic finance firm AMLAK Finance, Dubai International Capital, Dubai International Finance Centre, and United Arab Emirates investment house Istithmar. Dubai Airport Free Zone Authority, the Dubai Government and real estate company Emaar Properties complete the list of partners. The funding will be “mainly equity”.

Dubai Airport Free Zone Authority general director Mohammed Al Zarouni has been appointed DAE’s managing director and will be supported by DAE project director Rashid Al Malik.


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