Aviation safety and security have to be strengthened across the Middle East in view of the continuous growth in the number of passengers within the region and outside, HE the Minister of Transport and Communications Jassim Seif Ahmed al-Sulaiti said on Thursday.
He was addressing a high-level meeting of senior officials of the civil aviation departments of 12 member states at the 3rd Middle East Aviation Safety Summit.
Directors general and CEOs of civil aviation authorities (CAAs) of the region and senior technical professionals were also among the participants of the three-day meeting which concluded on Thursday.
The meeting was organised by the region's civil aviation authorities in tandem with the Regional Office of the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).
Representatives of civil aviation authorities from about 15 countries and a number of regional and international organisations and stakeholders in the aviation industry were present.
While hailing the initiatives of the member states, HE al-Sulaiti recalled that the industry is facing a lot of challenges at different levels of safety and security, notwithstanding the remarkable strides made in the region.
Senior officials of the civil aviation authorities of the region at the meeting.
"Most member states have invested heavily in improving the safety standards and they cannot afford any compromise in future either with regard to passenger safety," he stressed.
HE the minister said the meeting witnessed meaningful discussions on a host of issues concerning the aviation sector and also explored ways to further improve safety aspects.
"Such deliberations assume paramount importance as there has been a remarkable increase in the number of daily flights over the last one decade within the Middle East and also towards other areas.
"These interactions would help professionals exchange their ideas, innovations and on top of all experiences for improving the safety of air passengers."
The delegates also reviewed the possibility of putting in place a strategy to attain the highest levels of the global standards for aviation safety.
The meeting stressed the importance of implementing the Doha Declaration which was approved during the third meeting of directors of civil aviation authorities in the Middle East region last year.
Later, ICAO regional director Mohamed Khalifa Rahma explained some of the laudable strides made by member states over the last few years to strengthen aviation safety.