Abu Dhabi to set up Mena’s first sustainable electric aircraft, drone manufacturing facility

The new project is in line with the Abu Dhabi Industrial Strategy’s initiatives

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Ashwani Kumar

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Hussain Ali Alomaeirah, founder and chairman of Monarch, signed the agreement with Yang Nick Ning, board of director of EHang holdings. - Supplied photo
Hussain Ali Alomaeirah, founder and chairman of Monarch, signed the agreement with Yang Nick Ning, board of director of EHang holdings. - Supplied photo

Published: Fri 28 Apr 2023, 1:09 PM

Abu Dhabi will be home to the first facility in the Middle East and Africa to manufacture and operate sustainable electric-powered aircrafts and drones for passengers and cargo transportation.

Abu Dhabi-based Monarch Airplane Manufacturing and China’s EHang Holdings – a leading autonomous aerial vehicle (AAV) technology platform company, signed a partnership agreement to establish the state-of-the-art facility in the UAE capital.

As per the agreement, a command-and-control centre will be established to manage the urban air mobility autonomously and build infrastructure, vertiports – take-off and landing platforms — and facilities for operating electric aircrafts and drones. The facility will provide opportunities to qualify and train Emirati talents.

“This partnership to manufacture and manage electric-powered aircraft and drones for cargo and passengers reflects high level of our infrastructure for advanced and smart industries and developed legislative and regulatory frameworks in the emirate, which provides an attractive environment for innovations and investments in advanced industries and technological transformation,” Rashed Abdulkarim Al Blooshi, Undersecretary of Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development, said.

The new project is in line with the Abu Dhabi Industrial Strategy’s initiatives, including Industry 4.0’s innovative technologies, new circular economy regulatory framework as well as new green policies and incentives to continue its transition towards a smart, circular, and sustainable economy.

“As part of its efforts to transition to the next phase of economic diversification, Abu Dhabi is focusing on knowledge-based, innovation-driven economic sectors. The Industrial Strategy is a major factor to achieve our objectives as its programmes aim to enhance, encourage, and adopt methods and technologies of industry 4.0, circular economy, talent development, ecosystem enablement, homegrown supply chain, and value chain development,” Al Blooshi said.

Cargo, passenger transportation

The project will facilitate flow of goods and merchandise to sales outlets, ports, and airports, and enhance seamless trade. It will help in establishing advanced infrastructure for vertiports and autonomous flight management systems operated by artificial intelligence, supported by techniques of sustainable and electric-powered commercial aircraft and drones. It will be implemented through cooperation and partnership with local entities to enable Abu Dhabi to adopt urban aviation technologies.

“To ensure best conditions for investors and entrepreneurs, ADDED has launched many initiatives to enhance ease of doing business and trade, financing, and attract foreign direct investment,” Al Blooshi underlined.

Hussain Ali Alomaeirah, founder and chairman of Monarch, signed the agreement with Yang Nick Ning, board of director of EHang holdings.

“This venture will support the future of the transportation sector in the emirate of Abu Dhabi in line with the government's vision to enhance fundamentals of the smart city. It provides a new concept of cargo and passenger transportation, utilising advanced technologies, artificial intelligence, and sustainable energy with zero carbon emissions,” Alomaeirah said.

The project focuses on improving smart and sustainable mobility, and will enhance Abu Dhabi’s position as the smartest city in the region.

“Monarch is establishing partnerships with the world’s best manufacturer of electric aircrafts, and a designer and consulting company for urban air mobility (UAM), which develops and operates the most advanced UAM systems in the world,” Alomaeirah added.


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