Business deals worth $850 million were signed at the second Bahrain International Airshow (BIAS), said a senior government official.
Millions of dollars have also been pumped into the economy by the thousands of visitors who came to Bahrain for the three-day event, said Civil Aviation Affairs (CAA) Under-Secretary Captain Abdulrahman Al Gaoud.
‘We have already recorded $850 million in business deals,’ he said during a Press conference at the BIAS media centre to mark the conclusion of the event yesterday.
‘Around 50,000 visitors had already been logged at the end of the second day and we expect to close at more than 60,000.
‘The Bahrain economy has benefited greatly - hotels are full, car rental firms have done great business and tour operators have had a field day - all this is thanks to this show, which has once again proved Bahrain is the place to be for international events.’
Capt Al Gaoud, who is also a member of the show’s Supreme Organising Committee, also revealed plans to increase the size of the event by at least 50 per cent for the 2014 edition.
‘We have plans to build a new car park, a brand new and much bigger public area as well as increase by 50 per cent the trade area for the next show,’ he said.
Many of the companies that signed deals at the show have also announced plans to set up operations in Bahrain in the near future, revealed Capt Al Gaoud.
‘We are happy that despite the difficult times we have had in the last one year, we have been able to host a very successful show,’ he said. ‘Everyone who has taken part is happy.’
Another member of the organising committee, Sakhir Air Base commander Brigadier Mohamed Al Mosalam said officials had been inundated with demands to make the show bigger. ‘We have already set in motion the plans to do so,’ he said.
The show, which started on Thursday, was organised by exhibitions organiser Farnborough International in collaboration with CAA. Farnborough exhibitions and events director Amanda Stainer also attended the Press conference.