The Armed Forces of the United Arab Emirates are evaluating the purchase of airplanes made by Brazilian aircraft maker Embraer. The company from southeastern Brazilian city of São José dos Campos, in the interior of the state of São Paulo, participated in the 8th International Defense Exhibition (Idex), which began last Sunday and ended yesterday, February 22, in Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the Arab country.
According to Emirates News Agency (WAM), the Armed Forces of the Emirates are studying the possibility of purchasing training airplanes from three foreign companies, among them Brazilian aircraft maker Embraer. The Brazilian organization has a stand at the fair.
Before the end of the expo the Emirates' Armed Forces had already closed up orders worth US$ 670 million, with various foreign companies. They are still evaluating, according to WAM, the purchase of Swiss Pilatus turboprop aircraft, of Italian Aeromacchi airplanes or of Embraer turboprops for pilot training.
These three companies were short listed from 12 aircraft makers participating in the fair. Embraer is the only Brazilian company participating in Idex.
Embraer has various defense products, among them the Super Tucano. Early last year the company took the aircraft on a tour of countries in Africa, Asia and the Middle East, including some Arab countries. The Super Tucano is a last generation military turboprop for training and light attack.
Embraer has already received orders for 120 Super Tucanos by the armed forces of Brazil and Colombia. Fifty of the airplanes are already in operation. The first international order was placed by Colombia in December 2005 and the first aircraft were delivered at the end of last year.
To Idex, which is taking place at the International Exhibition Center, Embraer sent a group of representatives led by Ricardo Bester, the Customer Support Director in the Defense and Government Department.
"Like no other region in the world, the Middle East presents high concentration of strategic natural resources, as well as extensive maritime and land frontiers, placing self-defense among the main concerns of the countries in the region," stated Luiz Carlos Aguiar, vice-president for the Defense and Government Market at Embraer, in a press statement.
Apart from the Super Tucano, Embraer has other defense products for intelligence, vigilance and reconnaissance, among them the Embraer 145 Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C). The aircraft is already in operation in Brazil, Greece and Mexico.
There is also aircraft 145 Remote Sensing/Air Ground Surveillance (RS/AGS), which supplies real-time and near real-time imagery and electronic intelligence. Three of these aircraft are already used by the Brazilian Air Force (FAB). The P-99 is another Embraer defense aircraft, for marine patrolling, also used by the government of Mexico.
Embraer is the world leader in the production of commercial aircraft of up to 110 seats. The company's commercial aircraft have already been ordered by 50 airlines all around the world. Embraer currently has 1,533 firm orders and 701 options in their portfolio.
Embraer has 37 years of experience in the development and production of aircraft. The company is among the main Brazilian exporters, employs 19,265 people and had, up to the end of 2006, a firm order backlog of US$ 14.8 billion.
Embraer has already participated in various fairs in the Arab countries, among them Dubai Air Show, in the Emirates and Algiers International Fair, in Algeria. Idex takes place every two years. In this edition, the fair occupies an area of 38,000 square meters, 37% more than in the previous fair. There are 900 exhibitors from 55 countries.
According to information published by WAM, 40,000 tourists, among them 90 official and military delegations were expected to visit the fair. In the first two days of the event, over 18,000 visitors went to the exhibition. The 2005 edition of Idex counted on 906 exhibitors from 50 countries. The fair received 36,945 visitors and 55 official delegations.