The successful delivery of Asia’s most influential international aerospace and defence exhibition reaffirms Singapore’s position as a global business events hub
Brought to you by the Singapore Tourism Board
The recently concluded Singapore Airshow 2022 is representative of many crucial milestones. It heralds the recovery and advancement of the aviation industry, and positions Singapore on a strong footing for a progressive restart of her Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) sector. It also signals the strong recovery of Singapore’s MICE industry.
Despite the pandemic, the four-day event hosted close to 13,000 trade attendees from more than 39 countries or regions and almost 600 participating companies. The figures represent more than 70 per cent of the top 20 global aerospace companies, keen to expand partnerships, networks and business opportunities worldwide.
Exhibitors included prominent industry players like Airbus, Boeing, Lockheed Martin and Rolls-Royce, as well as new entrants such as Avnon Group, Diethelm Keller Aviation and Volocopter.
Strategic partnerships, critical conversations
Vital partnerships, critical conversations and fresh ideas that emerged through the event will serve to catalyse the transformation and rebound of the aerospace and defence sector.
For example, the event was a platform for Singapore Airlines (SIA) to firm up an order for seven Airbus A350F freighter aircraft, with options for five more, as well as engines for 22 Boeing 777 aircraft and a long-term agreement with Collins Aerospace for maintenance, repair, and overhaul services to support its fleet of 55 Boeing 787 aircraft.
Other aircraft orders involved Etihad’s seven Airbus A350F freighters, JetBlue’s 30 additional Airbus A220-300, and Western Global Airlines’ two Boeing 777 freighters.
Singapore Airshow 2022 also paved the way for more eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) aircraft entering the marketplace, with AirAsia and Australia’s Microflite and HeliSpirit announcing the build up of their fleet with new leases and orders from Eve UAM (an Embraer company).
Announcements in strategic partnerships included ST Engineering’s consortium with Skyports and Sumitomo Corporation in a nine-month trial to provide unmanned aircraft for shore-to-ship parcel delivery; Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore’s collaboration with Changi Airport Group, Airbus and Linde to study the development of hydrogen supply and infrastructure for aviation; as well as JTC Corporation and the Singapore Economic Development Board’s MOUs with Skyports and Volocopter to transform the Seletar Aerospace Park into a future Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) hub to support the emerging sector.
A nascent area that presents strong growth opportunities for Singapore, AAM is an air transport system concept that integrates new, transformational aircraft designs and flight technologies into existing and modified airspace operations.
Progress in sustainable aviation was made with SIA, Airbus, Rolls-Royce and Safran signing a Global Sustainable Aviation Fuel Declaration to promote the acceleration of the development, production, and consumption of green fuel.
A key event highlight of Singapore Airshow 2022 was the inaugural Sustainable Aviation Forum and the Aviation CEO Forum, a platform for thought leaders to exchange views and explore collaboration opportunities to build a better future.
Singapore Airshow 2022 itself upheld sustainability efforts by going largely paperless and drawing power from solar energy generated from 15,000 panels installed on the roof of the event venue.
Leck Chet Lam, managing director, Experia Events, organiser of the event said: “Despite an evolving pandemic, we pushed ahead to stage the 2022 edition of Singapore Airshow to help leaders navigate the industry’s path towards recovery, and band together for a sustainable future.”
Testament to Singapore Airshow 2022’s triumphant showing, almost 80 per cent of its key exhibitors committed to its ninth edition from February 20 – 25 in 2024.
Celebrating the successful delivery of the event, Poh Chi Chuan, executive director of exhibitions and conferences, Singapore Tourism Board, said: “Singapore Airshow 2022 is momentous as the first large-scale, in-person international MICE event held in Singapore since the start of the pandemic. This reaffirms our position as a MICE hub and signals our readiness to host more major events from 2022 onwards.”
Safe and calibrated resumption
To pave the way for the resumption of larger business events in Singapore this year, the biennial premier exhibition trialled new protocols, including a higher event capacity and daily Covid-19 testing.
With health and safety as top priority, all delegates were pre-registered and fully-vaccinated. They also adhered to prevailing safe management measures so as to establish a Covid-safe environment for all participants to conduct business.
While attendees were treated to spectacular aerial displays on-site, the public caught the dramatic action from the comfort and safety of their homes via livestreams.
Percival Goh, executive vice president/head strategy and defence systems and head international defence business of ST Engineering, the largest exhibitor at the event, said “meticulous planning and execution by both the organisers and exhibitors to comply with the comprehensive health and safety protocols put in place – from daily testing for all exhibitors and visitors, to enforcement of safe distancing measures – led to fruitful outcomes and positive experiences for everyone. The value of face-to-face networking and discussions at such platforms simply cannot be replaced by tele-conferencing”.
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Photo credit: Singapore Airshow 2022