This year's Africa Aerospace and Defence show is a year for anniversaries. The AAD show itself celebrates 20 years, while the hosting venue, Waterkloof Air Force Base, is 80 years old. Armscor is also commemorating its 50th anniversary in 2018.
The 2018 edition of AAD maintains the tradition of being the region's premier defence security, and aviation event. It is an ideal forum and marketplace, not only showcasing the latest developments in the technological capabilities and services that South Africa has to offer to a global audience, but also providing an environment in which companies from other nations can promote their products to the South African and regional markets.
A number of new products have been unveiled, notably from South African companies. Milkor is presenting a new family of UAVs, a new 4x4 and the distinctive MN Centurion vessel.
OTT Technologies has unveiled its Puma logistics vehicle, while the Mbombe 8 from Paramount is making its first appearance. SVI has revealed a vehicle with a Thales South Africa mortar. Denel is showing its Cheetah C-RAM missile for the first time, as well as the T5-52 self-propelled gun and the RG41 vehicle with a Badger turret.
Debutants from outside South Africa include a welcome appearance by the Proforce vehicles from Nigeria, while Jadara is showing its Terminator missile for the first time outside Jordan. Russia's United Aircraft Corporation has launched the marketing of its soon-to-fly Il-112V light tactical airlifter at AAD.
AAD also provides a perfect venue to catch up with progress being made on important defence programmes such as the AHRLAC/ Mwari, of which both development aircraft have been flying daily at the show. Importantly, AAD is also a place in which international partnerships can be forged and grown. As an example, this week ST Engineering announced a deal with Paramount under which the Singaporean company is building Marauder vehicles.