Al Maktoum airport opens for general aviation

GCAA grants approval after a thorough review of new Dubai airport

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Dubai Airports officially opened Dubai World Central – Al Maktoum International (DWC) for general aviation operations on Thursday following the UAE General Civil Aviation Authority’s regulatory approval.

The GCAA granted approval yesterday following a thorough review of safety, security and standard operational procedures and airport inspections. The UAE’s aviation regulator also authorised issuance of an amended aerodrome certificate for helicopter operations and passenger aircraft operations with up to 60 persons on board including passengers and crew. Dubai World Central- Al Maktoum International initially opened for cargo operations in June of last year.

“This is a significant development for Dubai World Central – Al Maktoum International, which we foresee as developing into a major regional hub for general aviation in the years to come,” said Paul Griffiths, CEO, Dubai Airports. “Our new airport is an increasingly appealing option for general aviation companies in the region particularly as air traffic volumes increase at Dubai International.”

Al Futtaim Services Company, in a joint venture with a leading business jet operator in Europe, will provide a wide range of general aviation services at Dubai’s new airport as the launch customer. Al Futtaim operates a fleet of varied aircraft including Airbus A319 Corporate Jets and Bombardier Global Express. Of its fleet of 12 aircraft, four will initially be put into an operation featuring one daily flight with the frequency increasing in the months ahead. The launch date has yet to be finalised.

General aviation forms a significant part of Dubai Airports’ business with 22,500 movements recorded at Dubai International in 2010. The launch of services at DWC will lead to a gradual transitioning of General Aviation operations to the new airport. Dubai Airports projects 25 to 40 movements per day at DWC by the end of 2011.

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