Abu Dhabi Airports Company (Adac), an Abu Dhabi Government owned enterprise, has won the bid to host the air transport industry's largest international event in the UAE capital in 2012.
Routes - The World Route Development Forum is an annual event for the air service development industry, which brings together airlines, airports and tourism authorities and provides opportunities to highlight route opportunities for airlines and host airports as well as identifying areas for ongoing business development, for the sector.
"Route development is the life-blood of any airport, airline and related industries and, with Abu Dhabi International one of the fastest growing aviation hubs in the world today, we are very happy to have been selected to host the world's leading air transport forum and event," said Khalifa Al Mazrouei, Chairman of Adac.
"The winning bid is a collective achievement for Abu Dhabi as a whole, not just for the aviation sector, and provides an opportunity to showcase the UAE's capital city and the wider emirate to the world," he added.
Mike Howarth, Founder of Routes Development Group, said: "There is always intense competition to host Routes, the annual gathering of the people who make decisions as to where the world's airlines fly."
"Abu Dhabi met all the criteria, it is a new world aviation hub, Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Centre (Adnec) is now a major player on the international events circuit and the bidding partners led by the airport presented a compelling and powerful case."
Support Sponsor, Ahmed Hussein, Deputy Director general of Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (ADTA), said: "This is a fantastic vote of confidence in Abu Dhabi as a destination. The international MICE business is extremely important to us and Routes has even greater relevance to us as the development of air access is crucial to any destination's business and tourism progression."
James Hogan, Etihad Airways' CEO, also a Support Partner, said: "Hosting the World Route Development Forum in Abu Dhabi is another example of the city's growing role and importance in the global aviation industry. As our home-base, Etihad is proud to play a central role in bringing the forum to Abu Dhabi and look forward to a very successful edition of the event."
The 18th World Route Development Forum is expected to be the largest ever planned, with 3,500-4,000 decision-making delegates estimated to attend and the whole of Adnec's facilities set to be fully occupied by the event, which will run from September 30 to October 3, 2012.