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Abu Dhabi to host 10th ACI Training Centre

Airports Council International (ACI) and the Gulf Centre for Aviation Studies (GCAS) – a subsidiary of Abu Dhabi Airports Company (ADAC) – have signed an agreement to open a new ACI Training Centre, making Abu Dhabi the 10th global training hub in the world and the second in the Middle East region.  

At the signing ceremony held in Geneva, ACI Director General Angela Gittens said, “ACI looks forward to extending its partnership in the Gulf region with the establishment of a new training hub in Abu Dhabi. GCAS has taken a leadership position by ensuring that the development of executive and staff expertise will advance hand in hand with the rapid expansion of the aviation industry in this dynamic region. They are set to grow their business and this step shows that they are not only investing in infrastructure, but also in human capital.  ACI firmly believes that performance excellence will be a key to a sustainable future for aviation.”  

The goal of ACI is to bring training as close to home as possible for the association’s members who operate over 1600 airports. Each new centre extends access to courses and industry-recognized accreditation programmes that enable airport personnel to improve their proficiencies and management skills.  

Gittens added, “The establishment of this partnership is fully aligned with ACI’s mandate to promote airport excellence by providing high quality, comprehensive training solutions to our members. As the needs of the industry grow, ACI will continue to enhance competency based training programmes that address those needs through committed partnerships with our ACI members in regional training centres around the world.”  

Mr. Mohammed Al Bulooki, General Manager, Gulf Centre for Aviation Studies added, “This partnership with ACI represents a key milestone as GCAS strives to provide its large customer base with the best airport executive training available.

“With several billions of dollars invested in airport infrastructure projects across the GCC, and the wider Middle East region, GCAS projects strong demand for highly-skilled and well-trained aviation executives. GCAS’s purpose-built, state-of-the-art, facility at Al Bateen Executive Airport in Abu Dhabi city also provides the best quality training as students get the opportunity to experience – hands on – real airport operations.” 

Also present for the signing of the agreement was ACI’s Director for Global Training, Victor de Barrena. He emphasized the excellent match between the GCAS centre’s training objectives and the ACI range of programmes, “GCAS is seeking a flexible and thorough approach to its training needs. That corresponds perfectly to the ACI global training course offering, which encompasses four key levels of training for airports and takes into account the needs of the aviation industry as stated by ICAO and other non regulatory organizations. The four layers provide a continuum for career development from entry level skills proficiency, to global middle and high level management accreditation to executive training for the top leadership positions. We look forward to a long and fruitful cooperation with our new partners.”

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