Dubai – Under the Patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai, and with the support of the UAE Ministry of Defence and the UAE Air Force and Air Defense, SEGMA yesterday held the 8th Dubai International Air Chiefs Conference (DIAC 2017) at the Jumeirah Beach Hotel in Dubai. DIAC 2017 was held under the theme of “The Future of Air Power: Exploiting Advances in Network Centric Warfare” and conference brought together high level officials from the UAE, senior representatives from industry partners, and high level delegations from around the world, including from Algeria, Australia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Canada, China, Colombia, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Mexico, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Netherlands, Pakistan, Serbia, Singapore, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Tunisia, United Kingdom and United States. DIAC 2017 was supported by leading industry partners including Platinum Sponsor Lockheed Martin, Gold Sponsors Raytheon, Northrop Grumman and Airlink International, Gala Dinner Sponsor Saab, and Associate Sponsors MBDA, Textron Systems, Boeing, Thales, Rafale International and International Golden Group. Media partners included Official Media Partners Nation Shield, Defense News and Al Jundi Journal, Online Arabic Media Partner SDArabia, and Media Partners: Arabian Aerospace, African Aerospace, Aviation Week, Al Defaiya, Defence21, Arab Defence Journal, Aeromag Asia, Militar, Al Aman Wal Difa, and Defense and Security Report.
DIAC 2017 Opening Session
The opening session was commenced by Riad Kahwaji, General Manager, SEGMA, who gave a warm welcome to UAE officials, international delegations, and industry representatives and appreciated the notable support of the UAE Ministry of Defense and the UAE Air Force and Air Defense. Riad Kahwaji introduced the theme for DIAC 2017 by noting how much air power has evolved since the first air raid took place in 1915 and how we are on the verge of new generational leap forward in air power. The opening remarks was followed by a keynote speech from His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed al Maktoum, President of the Department of Civil Aviation, CEO and Chairman of The Emirates Group and Chairman of Dubai World on behalf of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister of the UAE, Minister of Defense and Ruler of Dubai. His Highness discussed the importance of air power today pointing out the experiences of Syria, Iraq and Yemen, and commended the UAE leadership for investing in highly professional armed forces equipped with highly capable systems. His Highness noted the UAE’s ambitions for the future as it aims to harness new technologies and concepts to build a robust future air power capability against threats to the UAE. A welcome address was provided by Major General Ibrahim Nasser Al Alawi, Commander, UAE Air Force and Air Defense, who highlighted the importance of Dubai Air Show as one of the fastest growing Air Shows in the world with the upcoming edition to be the biggest yet.
DIAC 2017’s first plenary session looked at “Shaping the Environment: Adapting Operations to a Distributed Information Network” and was moderated by Gary North, Vice President for Customer Requirements, Lockheed Martin. This session featured three speakers: General Stephen W. “Seve” Wilson, Vice Chief of Staff, United States Air Force, who briefed on “New Roles and Missions: Integrating Future 4th & 5th Generation Capabilities into Counter-Insurgency Operations”; Brigadier General Rashed M. Al Shamsi, Deputy Commander, UAE Air Force and Air Defense, who briefed on “Closing the Sensor-Shooter Gap: Increasing ISR and Targeting Capacity against an Asymmetrical Threat”, and; Lieutenant General Enzo Vecciarelli, Chief of Staff, Italian Air Force, who briefed on “Connecting the Battlespace: Defining C4I Requirements in a 4th& 5th Generation Coalition Environment.”
The second plenary session looked at “Developing a Shared Joint Picture: Leveraging Air Power’s Asymmetrical Advantages” and was moderated by Paul Casey, UAE General Manager, Northrop Grumman International. This session featured: Air Vice Marshal Leigh Gordon, Head, Joint Strike Fighter Program, Royal Australian Air Force, who briefed on “Examining the SMARTer Tanker Concept: Utilizing Air Mobility Assets as a Coalition Force Multiplier”; Vice Admiral John C. Aquilino, Commander, Naval Forces Central Command, United States Navy, who briefed on “Cooperative Engagement Capability: Directing Shared Sensor Data toward a Maritime and Ballistic Missile Threat”, and; Air Commodore Philippe Adam, Commander for Operations, Aviation Brigade, French Air Force, who briefed on “Examining Future Manned & Unmanned Platform Architecture and Interactions: Addressing the Air Operations Connectivity and Network Sharing Challenges.”
The third and final plenary session of DIAC 2017 looked at “Defining the Future Requirements: Preparing for a New Sensor Fused Battlespace” and was moderated by Christopher J. Davis, President, Raytheon International, Incorporated. The third session featured: Lieutenant General Michael J. Hood CMM, Commander, Royal Canadian Air Force, who briefed on “Leveraging Innovation to Build the Future Force”; Air Vice Marshall Gerry M. Mayhew CBE, Commander, No. 1 Group, Royal Air Force, United Kingdom, who briefed on “Future Plans and Priorities for 5th Generation Training: Striking a Balance between LVC and Live Training”, and; Air Commodore Robert Adang, Deputy Director, European Air Group (EAG), Royal Netherlands Air Force, who briefed on “Building a Fifth Generation Air Force: Reshaping Defense into an Integrated Fighting Force.”
DIAC 2017 concluded with enormous success.