Held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the President of the UAE and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, the International Defence Exhibition (IDEX) was opened yesterday by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces. HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed will be present during the course of IDEX, holding meetings with representatives from international companies.
Staff Major General Pilot Abdullah Al Hashimi, Executive Director for Strategic Analysis at the UAE Ministry of Defence, was keen to outline the advantages that IDEX brings to the UAE, pointing out that it reflects the vision of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan that the UAE’s future would be based on educating the nation’s young people, and not on oil. The exhibition helps to maintain the growth, strength, durability and diversity of the UAE economy, while making a major contribution to sustainable development. The exhibition demonstrates the UAE’s ability to host major global companies and the economy’s ability to absorb foreign investments, thereby encouraging further investment.
Al Hashimi added that the success of IDEX had influenced the decision to make the UAE the host of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the first permanent headquarters of an international agency in the region. The general quoted Dr Hans Rosling’s prediction that the UAE would be ”the centre of the world” in 2100, and said it was a serious aspiration for all government departments to work towards this.