The VIP terminal in Dubai

Italian defence and aerospace giant Leonardo is partnering with Abu Dhabi’s Falcon Aviation Services to develop a new helicopter terminal as the company remains bullish on business in the Middle East, its chief executive said.

The VIP terminal will be based in Dubai to serve Expo 2020 visitors using Leonardo’s light intermediate AW169 helicopters, Alessandro Profumo, Leonardo’s chief executive, told The National in an exclusive interview before the Dubai Airshow on Sunday.

“It features private, airport-like comfort and ease of transport, and is an important investment in modern passenger transport services and mobility, with a dedicated facility that will support Expo 2020’s visitors’ helicopter transfer,” he said. “In the UAE we have very good demand on the civil side with our helicopter business.”

In the UAE, Leonardo already has partnerships in the helicopter maintenance, shipbuilding and security fields. It supplies the SF-260 and MB-339 advanced training aircraft for the UAE Air Force. The UAE Navy also uses Leonardo’s naval defence and combat management systems.

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