The Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Nosiviwe Mapisa – Nqakula, will officially open this year’s Africa Aerospace and Defence (AAD) exhibition on September 19, which promises to keep its status as the largest exhibition of air, sea and land capabilities on the African continent.
The exhibition will take place at Air Force Base Waterkloof in Centurion, just outside Pretoria between 19 and 21 September, with two airshow days on the 22nd and 23rd, which are open to the public.
The opening day will be abuzz with activities, ranging from the official opening with military bands playing and a fly past by some of the South African Air Force’s aircraft.
This year’s exhibition, the seventh edition of the biennial event, will be attended by ministers of defence from around the globe, with ministers from Botswana, Italy, Egypt, Malaysia, Namibia, the People’s Republic of China, Tanzania, Ukraine, Thailand, Zambia and Zimbabwe having confirmed their attendance.
AAD is made possible by a partnership between the Armaments Corporation of South Africa SOC Ltd (Armscor), South Africa’s Aerospace, Maritime and Defence Industry Association (AMD) and the Commercial Aviation Association of Southern Africa (CAASA), with full support from the Department of Defence and the active support of the Department of Trade & Industry, the Department of Transport and Department of Science & Technology.
Since its inception in 2000, the event has grown drastically and serves the interests of both civilian and military sectors. It has established itself as a major platform for South Africa’s defence, general aviation, space, homelands security, humanitarian relief, disaster management, freight and forwarding services as well as search and rescue technology industries and stakeholders. It is the largest exhibition of air, land and sea capabilities on the African continent.
Between 19 and 21 September, trade and static displays will attract visitors from over 31 countries as well as South African industry/trade delegates. The three trade days will be characterized by signing of trade agreements between South Africa and the visiting countries, as well as the signing of contracts with the local defence industry.
The trade days will be followed by the public days and spectacular airshow on 22 and 23 September 2012. It is anticipated that the public days will attract crowds in the region of more than 50,000 spectators per day.
The trade days will feature 11 national pavilions including United States, China, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Turkey, Russia, India, Switzerland, Romania and the United Kingdom and are expected to stimulate business for local and international companies involved in the growing defence, general aviation and security industries.
The open days will also feature vehicle demonstrations and exhibitions. There will also be a youth development programme (YDP), where learners and student can experience the world of flight simulators, vehicle simulators and model building. They will also obtain and interact with high tech simulators and information from role models on future career in the world of aerospace and defence.
Industry representatives will be on hand to provide more information about careers in the aerospace and defence industries.
Entertainment for the whole family, static displays of aircraft, trucks and armoured vehicles and an entertainment park for children (Fun Fly Park) will be available. Tickets will be sold at R50 (Adults), Children under 12 and Pensioners R40 and for Prepaid tickets (R10 discount).
As an official media partner, defenceWeb will be providing complete coverage of the show, as well as post-exhibition analysis and comment. During the show defenceWeb will launch the industry’s first totally free defence news application for iPad, iPhone and Android.
Proudly sponsored by industry giant Paramount, the application will be launched at the defenceWeb stand in Hangar 5. It will be available for free download from the Apple App Store and Android marketplace.
To further showcase its position as Africa’s leading defence news portal, defenceWeb will be giving away three brand new Apple iPad 3s, sponsored by steel plate specialist VR Laser. To stand a chance of winning, all entrants have to do is subscribe to the free defenceWeb newsletter at AAD.