Top airline executives discuss the future of aviation – ZAWYA

At KPMG’s annual Global Aviation Conference in Dubai
Dubai, UAE: Some of the greatest minds in the aviation industry took to the stage at this year’s Global Aviation Conference in Dubai, UAE, hosted by KPMG Lower Gulf. The two-day event (19-20 September 2022) was attended by His Excellency Abdulla bin Touq Al Marri, Minister of Economy and Chairman of the General Civil Aviation Authority, with headline speakers including senior executives from Etihad, Dnata and flydubai, as well as KPMG leaders flying in from all over the world. The conference theme was “Connecting Insights for the Future of Air Travel”.
His Excellency Abdulla bin Touq Al Marri, Minister of Economy and Chairman of the General Civil Aviation Authority said: “The UAE government’s visionary initiatives and investments in aerospace, airport development, and infrastructure continue to preserve the country’s position as a global hub for aviation, tourism, and travel. The aviation industry is a pillar of the UAE's economy and a driver of business activity in several sectors. The UAE remains committed to ensuring sustainable, inclusive, and long-term growth of the sector. Our progressive agenda for aviation will continue to strengthen the sector, creating thousands of high-quality jobs and contributing significantly to our national economy and economies in the region.”
Nader Haffar, Chairman of Middle East and South Asia, Chairman and CEO of KPMG Lower Gulf said: “The UAE’s flagship carriers Emirates, Etihad Airways, flydubai, and Air Arabia, and world-class airports in Dubai and Abu Dhabi have established their dominance on a global scale. Aviation is a vital sector for the UAE economy and is taking off again amidst economic recovery and increased consumer confidence. The Global Aviation Conference has provided a platform for industry experts and leaders to share their valuable perspectives, learnings, challenges and ideas.”
Driven by strong pent-up demand, eased travel restrictions, and growing employment rates, passenger numbers are expected to exceed 80 per cent of pre-pandemic levels this year, according to a forecast by International Air Transport Association (IATA). Cargo volumes are expected to reach a record high of 68.4 million tonnes in 2022. In the Middle East, this year’s re-opening of long-haul flights in particular, will provide a welcome boost.  
Speakers at this year’s Global Aviation Conference focused on priorities such as profitability, changing economics, fuel costs, disruption, digitalization, data privacy and cybersecurity, decarbonization and sustainability. KPMG Partners and Directors from around the world, aviation clients and industry experts were in attendance. 
The Global Aviation Conference is an annual event that shapes KPMG’s strategies to support its clients in the aviation sector, previously held in Chicago and London. It features thought leadership, networking and in-depth insights on issues and trends impacting aviation today.
“The Global Aviation Conference could not have a better venue than Dubai, a destination which epitomises resilience and has helped accelerate the recovery of aviation from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This past year underscored the importance of airlines in building connectivity for economic development and enhancing direct airlinks to Dubai’s aviation hub”, said Ghaith Al Ghaith, CEO of flydubai.
He added “flydubai continued to create free flows of trade and tourism, even though one of the most challenging times in the aviation history. Since 2021, we have taken delivery of 22 new aircraft, begun operations to more than 45 destinations and grown our workforce by 25%. We are well placed to continue with our growth trajectory over the next few years supported by an additional 150 new aircraft scheduled for delivery by 2029.”
About KPMG
KPMG is a global organization of independent professional services firms providing Audit, Tax and Advisory services. KPMG is the brand under which the member firms of KPMG International Limited (“KPMG International”) operate and provide professional services. “KPMG” is used to refer to individual member firms within the KPMG organization or to one or more member firms collectively.
KPMG firms operate in 145 countries and territories with more than 236,000 partners and employees working in member firms around the world. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such. Each KPMG member firm is responsible for its own obligations and liabilities.
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