At its closing press conference today, organisers of the Bahrain International Airshow confirmed that it had experienced its most successful event to date. Reflecting on this, they announced a date change for the next show which would see the event move to November 2018.

By the close of business on day three, the total value of orders reached US$9bn, more than triple the 2014 figure. This includes aircraft orders for national carrier Gulf Air and a number of contracts to support Bahrain’s Airport Modernization programme. As well as the record deals of the show, the organisers confirm that participation was also at an all-time high with more than 135 participating companies. Visitor numbers were also up with attendance figures for both the public and trade days at over 30,000.

Speaking about the event, His Excellency Engineer Kamal bin Ahmed Mohammed, Minister of Transportation and Telecommunications and Deputy Chairman of the Supreme Organising Committee of BIAS, said “The total deals signed during the fourth edition of the Bahrain International Airshow is a reflection of the event’s success and growth prospects which we have seen over the years in the total number of visitors, delegations, companies, and countries’ representation. With each edition of the show, we continue to see new participation as well as returning participants which include some of the biggest names in the aviation industry worldwide. We are delighted to see the participants choosing BIAS to make their announcements and conduct their business and we look forward to creating further new opportunities in the next edition.”

Adam Thomas, UK Spokesman for Defence and Security Exports, UKTI also noted, “BIAS16 was a unique opportunity for both the UK Government and business to network with senior Bahrainis and other gulf states. The event provides an outstanding business to business networking environment.”

Organisers of the Bahrain International Airshow also confirmed that the dates for the next edition of the show which will be 14th -16th November 2018, a change from its usual January slot on the aerospace events calendar. The move is a result of continued success and growth for the Airshow, with 2016 seeing the biggest show to date with participation up by 60% since the first show in 2010, the Exhibition Feature Pavilion growing nearly 50% since 2014 and more international presence than ever. To accommodate this growth and expand the event further, the decision has been made to move the dates of the show to an alternate year to Dubai in a similar format the Paris and Farnborough International Airshows work to.

Speaking about the date change, the minister said, “The Middle East civil aerospace market is growing at an exponential rate evidenced by the number of new airports in development in the region including Bahrain’s own Airport Modernization Programme. We want to provide the aerospace industry with more opportunities to do business in the region and the date change will help accommodate this.”

He further added, “The success and growth of the Bahrain International Airshow has shown there is a clear desire and demand for two major international airshows in the Middle East. Moving our show to November will allow both shows to operate successfully and showcase the strength of the aviation industry in the region. ”

Amanda Stainer, Commercial Director for Farnborough International Ltd, further commented, “We have been delighted to see the Bahrain International Airshow grow from strength to strength and in particular having a greater international presence. We’ve worked with the Ministry of Telecommunications and Transportation and the CAA very closely over the past 10 years and look forward to working with them again in 2018.”