Abu Dhabi – MENA Herald: The Higher Organizing Committee of the second Unmanned System Exhibition (UMEX 2016) and the pilot edition of the Simulation Conference and Exhibition 2016 has revealed that the upcoming editions of the region-leading defence events will offer 6 times more exhibition space compared to the debut edition of UMEX in 2015. The much-anticipated defence events, covering the fastest growing area of military capability, will be jointly organised by Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC) and the UAE Armed Forces from 6 to 8 March, 2016 at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre and Al Ain international Airport.
UMEX 2016 and the Simulation Exhibition and Conference will form part of the Abu Dhabi Aviation and Aerospace Week (ADAAW), taking place from 6 – 12 March 2016 under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces. The event will run concurrently in Abu Dhabi and Al Ain, holding six specialised events under its umbrella.
The announcement was made at a press conference in Abu Dhabi attended by His Excellency Brigadier General Rashid Mohammed Al-Shamsi, Chairman of the events’ higher organising committee, Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Acting Group CEO of Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC), Ali Al Yafei, CEO of Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments (ADASI) and Captain Pilot Saeed Al Makhmasi, the Umex spokesman.
His Excellency Brigadier General Rashid Mohammed Al-Shamsi, Chairman of the events’ higher organising committee, said: “The UAE has made remarkable progress within a short timeframe across divergent economic, social and defence segments, turning the nation into a leading hub for innovation and an oasis of security and stability in the region.”

He added: “These achievements would not have been possible without the support extended by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, and the guidance of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme commander of the UAE Armed Forces.”
The launch of ADAAW is the outcome of close collaboration between many leading national organisations that strive to showcase Abu Dhabi’s achievements in aviation and aerospace while consolidating the stature of the emirate as an international destination for specialised events in these vital industries.”
Al-Shamsi thanked all partners of UMEX from both the public and private sectors for their efforts to ensure the success of the event in a manner befitting the reputation of the UAE. He extended special thanks to the members of UMEX higher organizing committee who have been working round-the-clock to ensure the excellent delivery of the event, as well as officials from ADNEC – the organiser of UMEX, ADASI – UMEX’s strategic partner and the General Directorate of Abu Dhabi Police, among other entities.
Humaid Matar Al Dhaheri, Acting Group CEO, ADNEC, said: “The debut edition of UMEX in 2015 was held on the sidelines of International Defence Exhibition (IDEX) and Naval Defence and Maritime Security Exhibition (NAVDEX). As IDEX was running at the maximum capacity of Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre that offers a total of 133,000 square meters of internal and external exhibition space, we decided to delink UMEX from IDEX and to stage it as a standalone biennial event beginning 2016. This also led us to introduce a new exhibition dedicated for simulation and training to be held on the sidelines of UMEX.
“The delinking of UMEX from IDEX comes as part of ADNEC’s strategy to increase the number of specialised exhibitions and conferences held in Abu Dhabi to enhance Abu Dhabi’s reputation as the capital of business tourism industry in the region. This will in turn promote economic development in the emirate through increasing the direct and indirect impact of business tourism sector on economy, while also supporting other economic sectors associated with business tourism industry.”
Al Dhaheri also stressed that the strong interest and participation in the second edition of UMEX and the pilot edition of the Simulation Exhibition and Conference proves that ADNEC’s strategy to delink UMEX from IDEX was the right one. The move also helped us offer 6 times more exhibition space at the upcoming edition of UMEX which is expected to stretch over an area of 13,000 square meters, compared to 2,000 square meters in the previous session in 2015.
He added: “The number of exhibitors has also increased from 34 in the last edition to 90 international and local companies in the forthcoming edition, representing an increase of some 160%. Additionally, the event is expected to draw the participation from countries 22 countries, in comparison to 14 countries in the previous edition, registering a 60 percent growth.
At the same time, the number of companies staging live performances at the Al Ain International Airport has increased from four companies in the previous edition to eight companies.”
Al Dhaheri added: “Team ADNEC is working in their full capacity to ensure that all our facilities are ready to welcome the exhibitors and visitors and cater to their requirements. At ADNEC, we are committed to delivering excellent events that match the aspirations of our wise leadership.”
Al Dhaheri thanked the UAE Armed Forces for their great support for UMEX and Simulation Conference and Exhibition and ADASI for its sponsorship. He also commended the efforts of higher organizing committee members as well as ADNEC’s partners in both the public and private sectors.
For his part, Ali Al Yafei, CEO of Abu Dhabi Autonomous Systems Investments (ADASI): “ADASI is proud to be the strategic partner of UMEX. This partnership encapsulates our continued efforts to support the directives of the UAE’s wise leadership to intensify collaboration among all national institutions to ensure the success of pioneering initiatives across various economic sectors.
“Through our collaboration with the UAE Armed Forces and Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company, we seek to achieve our shared goal of developing advanced technologies that will support our defence industries, while also investing in our national human capital and promoting economic growth.”
He added: “UMEX and Simulation Conference and Exhibition 2016 are important platforms to showcase the latest technologies in unmanned systems and attract leading firms in this industry to Abu Dhabi. In working closely with our partners in both public and private sectors in organising this event, we seek to leverage modern technology transfer to ensure dedicating all efforts towards the Nation’s capability building, while solidifying Abu Dhabi’s position as the capital of the aviation and aerospace.”
Captain Pilot Saeed Mohammed Al Makhmasi, the UMEX spokesman said: “UMEX and Simulation Conference and Exhibition exhibit the growing sophistication and technology advancement in the area of unmanned defence systems, redefining future defensive capability, and opening up new and innovative ways to address any potential threats to our national security.
“Unmanned defense systems, whether they are aerial, marine or terrestrial, allow us to devise more effective defence strategies through the development of specialised military technologies, which is evident from the fact that this sector is set to witness a phenomenal growth in the coming years to touch US$8.8 billion by 2020.
“In addition to meeting the current defence needs of the region, the exhibition will further strengthen our local knowledge about defence capabilities and new technologies, helping us to keep pace with the anticipated demand for unmanned systems in the future. The GCC region is projected to spend US$1 billion by 2020 on building defence capabilities and unmanned systems.”
Alongside UMEX, Simulation Conference and Exhibition will provide an excellent opportunity to explore best-in-class training and simulation systems and how they can be cusomised to suit the requirements of various sectors. It will also provide the participants with an opportunity to get a hands-on experience on various applications of training and simulation systems by visiting the pavilions of specialised companies showcasing their systems.
Al Makhmasi added that the General Command of Armed Forces has already sent invitations to army chiefs of several countries around the world.