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DOHA, Qatar 12 November 2013 – The annual ACI Airport Exchange conference and exhibition commenced at Qatar National Convention Centre today with a series of keynote addresses, symposiums and seminars addressing the latest developments in the aviation sector. Themed ‘Beyond Airports 2020’, nearly 1,000 delegates from around the world are expected to attend the two-day conference.

H.E. Mr. Abdul Aziz Mohammed Al-Noaimi, Chairman of Qatar Civil Aviation Authority, inaugurated the Exhibition Arena with a ribbon-cutting ceremony. Senior Qatar Airways Group representatives attending the inauguration included Patrick Muller, Executive Vice President, and Abdulaziz Al-Mass, Senior Manager, Public Relations and Communications for Doha International Airport (DIA), and Nabeela Fakhri, Vice President, HR Employee Services for Qatar Airways.

Ashish Jain, Qatar Airways Senior Vice President for Group Safety and Security, delivered the keynote address on behalf of the airline’s CEO Akbar Al Baker.  Audiences were briefed on how Qatar Airways and Hamad International Airport (HIA) aim to enhance the region’s air transport infrastructure and capacity, as well as set new standards for airport hubs regionally and internationally.

“Qatar is a rapidly developing nation budding with aviation growth, spurred by the onset of Qatar Airways, which is at the helm of this development. Fundamentally, HIA arose from a need to increase Qatar’s aviation capacity. The new airport will keep pace with Qatar’s growth and actively contribute to this exciting era of cultural and economic development”, said Jain.

He also conveyed that airports need to develop the capacity to innovate and exceed expectations, which HIA is expected to achieve. “HIA represents an entirely new approach and understanding of what constitutes an airport of the future. From its design to operations, facilities and services, HIA will offer passengers a completely different experience from what they are accustomed to today”, he added.

Over the course of the event, top executives from DIA and Qatar Airways will shed light on how the HIA will deliver seamless passenger experiences so that passengers choose to travel via this airport.

“We need to serve our home city and remain competitive with other regional airport hubs; but we also aspire to set new standards of operational efficiency, passenger experience and community engagement. We want people to choose to travel through HIA as a destination experience”.

Jain concluded by acknowledging the challenges that HIA has faced in its opening, including construction delays, but firmly asserted that while Qatar is a rapidly developing country, it also demands nothing less than the best. 

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Notes to Editors:

About Qatar Airways
On October 30, 2013, Qatar Airways joined the oneworld Alliance, becoming the only major Gulf carrier to join a global airline alliance, enabling its customers to benefit from almost a thousand airports in more than 150 countries, with 14,000 daily departures.

Qatar Airways was presented with three honours at the annual Skytrax 2013 World Airline Awards held during the Paris Air Show at Le Bourget, France in June. The airline was awarded World’s Best Business Class, World’s Best Business Class Lounge and, for the second consecutive year, Best Airline Staff Service in the Middle East.

The airline has also been named Best Airline in the Middle East for the seventh year in a row, and its Premium Terminal at Doha International Airport named Best Premium Service Airport for the third consecutive year in 2013. Qatar Airways has also twice been the recipient of the prestigious Skytrax Airline of the Year Award in 2011 and 2012. Skytrax is the only global independent passenger survey monitoring airline standards and is considered the ultimate benchmark for excellence in the airline industry.

Qatar Airways currently has orders worth over US$50 billion for more than 230 aircraft, including Boeing 787s, 777s, Airbus A350s, A380s and A320 family of aircraft. For more information, visit www.qatarairways.com

About Doha International Airport

Doha International Airport, which currently handles more than 21.1 million passengers a year, has undergone a dramatic change over the past three years, virtually doubling in size to cope with the huge demand for air travel to and from Qatar, spearheaded by the huge infrastructure improvements taking place in the country.

Hamad International Airport is the world’s newest aviation hub, a world-class facility that is set to exceed expectations and redefine the passenger and transit experience.

Positioned at the edge of the Arabian Gulf, Hamad International Airport’s tranquil waterside setting provides a perfect backdrop for its stylish architectural elements, underpinned by advanced airport systems. Featuring two runways, among the longest in the world, a state-of-the-art air traffic control tower, a stunning passenger terminal with a design capacity of 24 million passengers per year, over 25,000 square metres of retail and food & beverage facilities and a uniquely shaped public mosque, these are some key aspects of the modern airport complex.  For more information about Doha International Airport or Hamad International Airport, please visit www.dohaairport.com

For further information contact:
Qatar Airways Group, Corporate Communications Department
Tel: +974 44302072, Fax: +974 44302069
Website: www.qatarairways.com

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