Military and Strategic Journal
Issued by the Directorate of Morale Guidance at the General Command of the Armed Forces
United Arab Emirates
Founded in August 1971


IAI Is Here to Stay

The Dubai Airshow, one of the world’s leading aerospace events, is the first international airshow happening live since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. After two years of no shows, exhibitors and visitors alike anticipate the Dubai Airshow to launch the aerospace market back to normality. This year, the event coincides with the World Expo taking place in Dubai for the first time. IAI’s strong presence at the airshow emphasises its commitment to a “long-term” company: ‘We Are Here To Stay,’ manifesting its focus to expand its activity in the region.
Sharon Biton, VP of Marketing at IAI, says, “As part of our business strategy in other markets, IAI seeks to establish joint ventures with companies and organisations that could contribute to developing market opportunities, marketing, and support ongoing programmes. Such joint ventures align with the company’s business strategy, offering much more than products but holistic solutions that meet customer needs.”

This approach is based on extensive experience gained over decades of developing, marketing, and supporting modern defence systems for Israel and foreign countries. This strategy has led to the development of cutting-edge defence solutions, integrating different systems and technologies into complete solutions tailored to meet each customer’s specific requirements and needs. This strategy has provided customers access to some of the world’s most advanced defense capabilities, including spy satellites, cyber security, border defence network, air and missile defences, special mission aircraft, and loitering missiles.
While IAI has all the technological capabilities to develop, produce and support those systems throughout their life cycles, some countries require or prefer to rely on the local resources to encourage academic research and development (R&D) and spur industrial growth. “IAI’s strategy encourages cooperation by teaming with local partners and transferring technology to ensure the local capabilities meet schedules, technical requirements, and programme quality,” says Biton. The UAE has come a long way in acquiring a modern defence force, and its combat-experienced military is eager to seek the most advanced technologies available by the local defence industry and foreign suppliers. This makes the UAE an excellent match to IAI’s needs, tapping the country’s excellent technical skills, research centres, and highly acclaimed academic establishments.
Cooperation is also undergoing several activities related to homeland security and cyber. IAI supports establishing a national cyberdefence capability in the UAE, building on the proven model implemented in other countries. Earlier in 2021, IAI signed a Memorandum of Understanding with UAE’s EDGE group to develop advanced Counter-Unmanned Aircraft Systems (C-UAS) tailored to the UAE market, with wide-ranging benefits for the region.

IAI is aligned with the UAE’s thrust to position its local defence industry at the cutting-edge of defence technology, supported by know-how and joint R&D that taps the country’s highly skilled workforce. “IAI is ready and willing to join forces and share the technology to meet such goals,” says Biton. Under this strategy, in August of this year, IAI signed a JV with UAE’s Etihad Engineering to establish a Passenger-to-Freighter Conversion Site for Boeing 777-300ER in Abu Dhabi. The new conversion centre in Abu Dhabi will operate in addition to IAI’s global cargo conversion site at Ben Gurion International Airport. The new centre will join other aircraft conversion sites IAI has established in several countries, tapping the growing demand for air cargo.
IAI operates such facilities in China, Mexico, and Ethiopia. The centre in Dubai will handle the company’s new wide-body aircraft. Due to enter service in 2022, the 777-300ERSF offers a more efficient operation than 747-400 freighters, burning 21 per cent less fuel and carrying 25 per cent more volume than production 777-200F freighters.
At the Dubai Airshow, IAI will showcase many of the solutions it offers to the UAE, to countries in the region, and worldwide. Dubai Airshow will provide the venue for introducing IAI’s new Barak MX air and naval missile defence systems, making its debut in the region. Other systems shown here for the first time are IAI’s reconnaissance satellites, new unmanned aerial vehicles designed for vertical takeoff and landing, and the latest Z-series all-terrain combat vehicles.
Visitors will view these systems on-site and through an impressive 3D experience depicting the advanced capabilities, attracting visitors to engage and interact with the presentation. Visitors will be able to peek into IAI’s highly advanced special mission aircraft, witness the conversion of a B777ERSF Big-Twin, and experience the latest helicopter cockpit design representing IAI’s military aircraft modernisation offering.

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