Italian firms showcase solutions for sustainable and innovative airports - GulfToday

Italian firms showcase solutions for sustainable and innovative airports


Top officials during the opening of Italy’s Pavilion at the Airport Show in Dubai on Tuesday.

Sajjad Ahmad, Deputy Business Editor

Italy, one of the world leaders in the design and construction of airports infrastructure, is presenting the Italian solutions for sustainable and innovative airports at the 22nd Airport Show.

The show opened on Tuesday and will run until Thursday (May 11th).

Located in Sheikh Saeed Hall 2 at the Dubai World Trade Centre, the Italy Pavilion is organised by the Italian Trade Agency (ITA), the Governmental Agency that promotes “Made in Italy” across the world according to the guidelines of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The 26 manufacturers showcasing Italian excellencies in the sector- ranging from air traffic management systems to construction, engineering and consultancy services - are all members of Air Tech Italy (ATI), the leading Trade Association representing Italian companies specialised in supplying products, technologies and services for airports and air-traffic control.

Italy has a global reputation for its excellent manufacturing capabilities and design skills and many Italian companies have been involved in a wide range of airport construction and management projects around the world and in the Middle East, including the expansion of the Dubai International Airport, the construction of the new terminal at the Muscat International Airport in Oman, the construction of the new terminal at the Kuwait International Airport and of the Hamad International Airport in Qatar.

Italian companies active in the sector of projecting, building, and managing airport infrastructure reached a total turnover of 4.8 billion euro with 20,000 employees in 2021.

An average of 421 million passengers - 5 per cent of the world total - transit trough Middle Eastern airports every year and, according to the ACI (Airports Council International), by 2040 the Passengers’ flow will reach of 1.1 billion units. Major investments in airport infrastructures are planned across the region with 155 modernization and expansion projects currently undergoing with an investment of around USD 200 billion.

Lorenzo Fanara, Ambassador of Italy to the UAE, said: “I am glad to present some of the leading Italian companies in the airport sector exhibiting at the Dubai Airport Show. Italy has a strong track record in aviation and airports, hosting airports such as Rome’s Fiumicino that are constantly at the top of global and European rankings for quality and services. Italian companies are eager to share their expertise in efficient, sustainable and high-tech airport design”.

Talking about the Italy Pavilion at the Airport Show, Amedeo Scarpa, Director of ITA office in the UAE said, “We are excited to be back at the Dubai Airport Show with 26 Italian companies whose motto this year will be “Sustainability is SustainabITALY”; the UAE and the GCC are considered one of the fastest growing markets for airport investments in the coming years.  Sustainability and digitalisation are hot topics also in the airport industry and are the main drivers defining development strategies and main infrastructural upgrading interventions for individual airports.”

Airports are rethinking how their infrastructures could be designed and operated to reduce their overall environmental footprint and increase their positive economic impact. Energy-efficient buildings using solar panels or wind turbines, better waste management and green mobility in the airports are some of the best practices that are being implemented.

New digital technologies in the aviation industry can be applied to both the infrastructure and the passenger flow to improve the overall efficiency and the passenger experience. Digitalisation will be key for the next decade to improve overall performance on all levels, from experience to resource management and even for sustainability where only the parts of the airport that need to be lighted or heated are used, where unnecessary vehicle movements are avoided and rubbish collection done in a smart way to name but a few examples.

“Airports in the Middle East will need to invest 151 billion dollars in capacity expansion as the global air passenger demand is expected to increase more than two-fold by 2040 as indicated by major studies” says Giulio De Carli, President of Air Tech Italy. “It’s expected that the airports in the Middle East will handle 1.1 billion passengers by 2040, a significant increase from 2019’s 421 million”.

 “Air Tech Italy’s participation at the Dubai Airport Show - for the third consecutive time - with an impressive national Pavilion promoted by ITA and involving 26 Italian companies, shows the growing focus of our industry on the region. Countries like the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman and Kuwait to name but a few, continue to invest in the latest airport technologies and in their infrastructures, aiming to be a leading logistics hub for the global market and a strategic logistics crossroads for the growing economies of Asia, Africa and Europe. For this reason - continues De Carli - Air Tech Italy will support the growing importance of the region by expanding the role of Italian solution providers for the aviation market. Attending the Dubai Airport Show is one of the key elements in this strategy, with the Saudi Airport Exhibition, to be held in Riyadh December 19th and 20th, yet another important event to support that same strategy.”

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