The Women In Aviation (WIA) Middle East chapter celebrated its 10th anniversary at the 22nd edition of the airport show. The show is the world’s largest airport industry B2B platform and was held at Dubai World Trade Centre. The event discussed how advancing the role of women has remained a key driver for change. A study by McKinsey across the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt, found the key to empower women in the 21 countries of the Middle East is not only to equip them with access to jobs but also ensure they have the right support and opportunities. Between 2023 and 2033, growth in air passenger and cargo traffic in the Middle East region is expected to outperform all other regions in the world.
The UAE will need 22,000 pilots and crew members by 2033, three years after the industry breaches the AED323.6 billion-mark. The UAE and Saudi Arabia together constitute 73 per cent of the total fleet size in the region. The UAE is the leading aviation investor, with nearly US$136.1 billion of investment planned between 2023 and 2033, as per the latest market research report by Japan’s Shibuya Data Count (SDKI). The aviation sector is getting increasingly popular in attracting women to crucial roles in airports, airlines and ANSPs in the Middle East, especially UAE—a fast-rising global aviation hub.