ABU DHABI, Under patronage of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and on behalf of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, inaugurated on Sunday the 15th edition of the International Defence Exhibition (IDEX 2021).
IDEX, which will be held over the next five days, until 25 February, at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, is the largest international events to take place in the post-pandemic recovery phase.Naval Defence and Maritime Security Exhibition (NAVDEX) is also being held along IDEX.
At the opening ceremony, H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan was joined by Ramzan Kadyrov, President of the Chechen Republic; Rustam Nurgaliyevich Minnikhanov, President of Tatarstan; Oleh Urusky, Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Strategic Industries of Ukraine; and General Mohamed Hamdan Daglu, First Deputy Chairman of the Sovereign Transitional Council of Sudan, alongside a number of senior officials. The ceremony, which was an exclusive event reserved for high-profile international delegates, observed the highest standards of precautionary and preventative measures.
Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed, commented: “IDEX 2021 is a prominent global exhibition, demonstrating the latest military equipment, advanced weaponry, and combat technologies. It presents a regional and international opportunity for all nations and major companies who operate in this strategic field.” “Organising this event, at this time, demonstrates how the UAE is fully-equipped to manage international events, given the exceptional circumstances which the world faces as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our nation’s readiness to host this exhibition has been enabled by the astute guidance and insightful vision of our wise leadership.
“Visionary innovation, specialised manufacturing, and cutting-edge scientific development is cornerstone priority for our nation, as made clear in our policy direction. These values will ensure an auspicious future for consecutive generations of Emiratis, alongside supporting our nation’s continued succession of majestic achievements.”
Commencing with the National Anthem of the United Arab Emirates, the inauguration ceremony included a visual presentation which narrated the nation’s story of accelerated development and global leadership, alongside highlighting the UAE’s roster of exceptional achievements, in spite of challenging global circumstances, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. Also included in the ceremony were a number of military parades and musical performances, as well as the iconic displays of the UAE’s aerobatic team, Al Fursan, who released their signature smoke trails in the colours of the nation’s flag above the sky in Abu Dhabi.
Other activities included mock exercises, co-performed by land, air, and naval units. During the drills, defence manoeuvring technology was showcased to audiences, highlighting state-of-the-art solutions which use virtual reality, artificial intelligence, robotics, and satellite communications to pinpoint vehicles’ location and movements.
In addition, the inauguration ceremony was attended by Mohammed bin Ahmed Al Bowardi, Minister of State for Defence Affairs; Lt. General Hamad Mohammed Thani Al Rumaithi, Chief of Staff of the UAE Armed Forces; alongside a number of senior commanders of the UAE Armed Forces.
IDEX and NVDEX are organised by the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC), in cooperation with the Ministry of Defense and the General Command of the UAE Armed Forces. The events exhibit cutting-edge technology and ground-breaking innovations across the global defence sector, alongside supporting the wider growth of the UAE’s security sector, and offering new opportunities for global corporate security growth.
This year’s edition of IDEX and NAVDEX is the largest on-site event in Abu Dhabi, marking the commencement of recovery following the pandemic. 900 exhibitors from 59 nations will participate at the event, with over 70,000 visitors and 110 international delegations having confirmed their attendance. Over 500 journalists from 64 nations will cover both the exhibitions.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Major General Staff Pilot Faris Khalaf Al Mazrouei, Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee for IDEX and NAVDEX, commented: “The opening of this global event is a moment of immense pride for us. IDEX and NAVDEX coincides with the Golden Jubilee of our nation, as both exhibitions continue their 27-year-old journey with a wide international turnout. The exhibitions continue to consolidate their strategic status as global platforms, presenting the latest breakthroughs in the fourth industrial revolution across the land, sea, and air defence sectors.
“Our nation is ready and fully capable to organise, deliver, and host leading international events. We have world-class infrastructure and expertise, alongside the confidence of the global community. IDEX and NAVDEX continue to grow and develop the worldwide defence sector, attracting significant international participation, in spite of ongoing global conditions,” he added.
Major General Pilot Staff Pilot Ishaq Saleh Al-Balushi, Head of the Executive Directorate of Industries and Development of Defence Capabilities at the Ministry of Defence, and Vice Chairman of the Higher Organising Committee for IDEX and NAVDEX, said: “IDEX and NAVDEX mark the commencement of the resumption of business tourism sectors. These decisive events contribute to our nation’s journey toward far-reaching advancement, as we cement the UAE’s position over the next fifty years. Through these exhibitions, we help to build a competitive national economy, based on knowledge and innovation.
“This event would not have been possible without the strenuous efforts of our working groups and organising committees. They have rigorously enforced health and safety procedures which severely adhere to local and international best practice. We have sought to ensure the health and safety of international delegates, participants, and visitors. Thanks to the visionary guidance of our wise leadership, who proactively managed and curbed the spread of COVID-19, we have been able to host IDEX and NAVDEX during this moment. We have implemented meticulous and exhaustive procedures, specifically tailored to enable this extraordinary edition, providing the global defence community with the opportunity to safely conduct business with confidence.”
Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Managing Director and Group CEO at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company, said: “At ADNEC, we are proud to have organised this extraordinary event, in close coordination with a range of organising committees and bodies. Through our careful collaboration, we have developed comprehensive procedures covering registration, arrival, and participation in the event. Furthermore, we have designed and implemented a plethora of procedures for welcoming international delegations, exhibitors, journalists, visitors, and participants, including visa issuance for international delegations and provision of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests.
“The benefits of this cooperation is demonstrated in the preliminary results related to international cooperation, which are already larger than our projected figures. Five nations will participate in IDEX and NAVDEX for the first time. 84 percent of exhibiting companies will be based internationally, while 16 percent will be UAE based. Such figures demonstrate the international community’s sustained and extensive interest in IDEX and NAVDEX. The exhibitions will be hosted across ADNEC’s indoor and outdoor exhibition space, across around 155,000 m2. Outdoor space and water demonstrations for NAVDEX will take place at the ADNEC Marina, spanning across 81,000 m2.”
Concluding, Al Dhaheri said: “The safety and wellbeing of all participants to IDEX, NAVDEX, and the International Defence Conference is ADNEC’s top priority. In close co-operation with health and regulatory authorities, ADNEC have implemented a wide range of health and safety measures which ensure the wellbeing of visitors and participants alike.”
A wide raft of health and safety measures will be applied throughout IDEX and NAVDEX 2021, ensuring the safety of delegations, participants, and visitors.
Source: Emirates News Agency