Saeed bin Khadim Al Mansouri, Executive Director of “Capital Events”, a subsidiary of the Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company, “ADNEC”, said that the fifteenth edition of the International Defence Exhibition and Conference “IDEX” and “NAVDEX” 2021, which will be held from 21 to 25 February, at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Center, will witness wide effective participation by companies and delegations alike, as a high participation rate of decision-makers and experts from various countries of the world has been recorded, which confirms the global position of the UAE as a safe, attractive (country) and able to host the world again, and enhances the confidence of partners and customers of ADNEC, which provides the infrastructure, flexibility of operations and competencies capable of organizing a global event of this size safely, while maintaining precautionary measures, safety and prevention measures.
In an exclusive interview with “Al-Jundi” Journal, he stressed that “IDEX” and “NAVDEX” exhibitions constitute the starting point as the first defence event to be held on the ground in the phase of recovery from the Corona pandemic, and they(NAVDEX&IDEX) represent the largest events at the level of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi at this stage, to prove that the UAE is well-prepared and able to organize and host leading international events, as the country has the necessary infrastructure and expertise to organize a global event of this size, and in a way that ensures compliance with precautionary measures, safety and preventive measures. Al Mansouri expressed his confidence in the ability to welcome the world again and welcome them on the ground in Abu Dhabi.
He added that the fifteenth edition of the exhibition will provide all participants and visitors with a unique opportunity to learn about the latest developments in the global defence sector and to research the current challenges facing the sector, and the security and defence strategies required to contribute to achieving world peace.
An exceptional edition & wide international and local participations
Saeed Al Mansouri indicated that the two exhibitions will witness wide participation from several countries, in addition to the participation of 5 new countries for the first time in this event, namely Azerbaijan, Portugal, Israel, Luxembourg and North Macedonia, which will establish the leading international position of the two exhibitions and Abu Dhabi and its ability to attract various countries of the world to participate in one of the most important international events specialized in the defence industry sector, despite the circumstances and challenges imposed by the (Covid-19) pandemic worldwide.
He explained that IDEX exhibition achieved significant quantitative and qualitative growth from its first launch in 1993 until 2019, as it witnessed an increase in the number of countries by 250%, the number of visitors increased by 500%, and the number of local and international companies participating in it increased by 400%. The total area allocated to the exhibits increased by 900%.
He added that the legacy of IDEX extends for more than 27 years in supporting the national and international defence industry sector. This exhibition established the position of the UAE and its pivotal role in supporting defence industries locally, regionally and globally, and contributed to supporting the process of sustainable economic development.
He added: “Through the development of the exhibition and the addition of NAVDEX and the International Defence Conference, these vital events have transformed throughout history into integrated global platforms, bringing together global, regional and local companies specialized in the sectors of land, maritime and air defence together, to review the latest technology and innovative equipment that these sectors have reached, in addition to providing ideal opportunities for fruitful strategic partnerships between major international companies specializing in these sectors.
Al-Mansouri emphasized that the event organizers in each edition seek to build on the successes achieved, organize exceptional editions, add new achievements that contribute to consolidating the pioneering position of this vital international event, and actively contribute to accelerating the recovery process and revitalizing the economic sectors in the country, and consolidating the position of the state. The UAE and its main role in supporting the domestic and international defence industries, which are among the most important economic pillars of countries, continue to organize and host leading global events, strengthen Abu Dhabi’s position as a leading regional center for business tourism, support the global defence industry sector, and allow leaders of this sector to continue to do business.
As for the local participation in the two exhibitions, Al-Mansouri said: “We are proud of the high rate of national participation in each of the two exhibitions, as national institutions have proven their ability to compete internationally in the defence and security sectors, in terms of innovation, productivity, equipment and distinguished human cadres, and this is evident in each edition through participation size and number of participating national companies. The national institutions receive the attention of the leaders of these sectors and local and international officials, and this is evident through the contracts that are concluded with these institutions in each edition.
Strict preventive measures
On the safety measures for visitors and exhibitors in light of the outbreak of the Corona epidemic, Al-Mansouri said: In each edition, ADNEC and the event organizing committees, in cooperation with the competent authorities, develop plans that contribute to facilitating procedures for exhibitors, media professionals, visitors and participants in the IDEX and NAVDEX exhibitions and the International Defence Conference. In this edition, carefully studied plans and work programs were developed to organize an exceptional edition by implementing a wide range of health, safety and prevention measures that ensure the security and safety of all participants and visitors in accordance with the highest global health and safety standards, as thermal scanners will be provided at all entrances, as well as sterilization and disinfection operations using nebulizers throughout the day, and the application of physical distancing standards and wearing face masks in all facilities, in order to contribute to strengthening the leadership position that the Emirate of Abu Dhabi has reached as a leading regional capital in the business tourism sector.
Executive Director of “Capital Events”, a subsidiary of Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company “ADNEC”
Al Mansouri began working for ADNEC in 2016, and he has more than 40 years of experience, after serving for 25 years in the UAE Armed Forces, where he retired with the rank of Staff Colonel in 2004, after which he held many important positions such as Deputy Director of Finance Affairs, Procurement Manager, Special Projects Consultant and CEO in a number of reputable companies.
Saeed Al Mansoori manages “Capital Events”, a subsidiary of “ADNEC” group that organizes the following exhibitions and conferences: The International Defence Exhibition “IDEX”, the Naval Defence Exhibition “NAVDEX”, the International Defence Conference, the Unmanned Systems Exhibition and Conference “UMEX”, the Simulation and Training Exhibition and Conference “CEMTEX”, the International Exhibition of National Security and Risk Prevention “ISNAR-Abu Dhabi” and the SIAL Middle East Exhibition And Abu Dhabi International Boat Show. Thanks to the efforts of the exceptional work teams in managing events, ADNEC has made important achievements in managing the largest international exhibitions that have contributed to revitalizing the business tourism sector in Abu Dhabi. Al Mansouri also participated in several boards and committees during his busy career, whether as a chairman or a committee member.
Interviewed By: Razi Ezzeddine El-Hadmi
Photos by: Muhammad Hassan Al-Shaer