KARACHI: The defence industries of Turkey, China, Russia, North America, South America, Europe and Asia will have a significant presence at the 9th International Defence Exhibition and Seminar (IDEAS), which is to open at the Karachi Expo Centre on Tuesday (Nov 22).
According to Commodore Tahir Javed, media director of the Defence Export Promotion Organisation (DEPO), Ministry of Defence Production, they have received an overwhelming response from exhibitors as well as delegations from around the globe for the biennial event.
Briefing media at the curtain-raiser on Sunday, he said the four-day event included the inaugural ceremony, seminar, the governor’s reception, sideline conferences where exhibitors would brief the participants on their products and the concluding ceremony.
“The inaugural day of the exhibition will be dedicated to officially invited delegations comprising senior officials of foreign countries, exhibitors and trade visitors from Pakistan and abroad,” he added.
About 90 delegations from 43 countries have already arrived to attend the exhibition and seminar, including 30 high-level teams comprising defence ministers, defence secretaries and services chiefs.
About 90 delegations from 43 countries have arrived to attend the four-day event
Accompanied by the director coordination of DEPO Brig Waheed Mumtaz, SSP (traffic) Erum Awan and chief operating officer of Badar Expo Solutions Zohair Naseer, Commodore Javed said that 418 firms 261 from 34 foreign countries and 157 from Pakistan would exhibit their products, adding that the DEPOT had also managed to rope in nine new countries Luxembourg, Denmark, Belarus, Poland, Czech Republic, Switzerland, Belgium, Nigeria and Romania.
Although Chinese and Turkish defence industries will have a significant presence, Russia is participating in the event this time in a big way.
“In 2014, only one Russian design and manufacturing company from Moscow, Russian Helicopters, participated for the first time. But this year we have three Russian companies taking part. There is Russian Helicopters again. And we also have Rosoboronexport and GlobalSecurity,” Commodore Javed said, adding that the DEPO had also been participating in their defence exhibitions in Russia.
The DEPO has booked a major portion of available space at the Expo Centre for defence companies’ stalls, besides adding a hall in the form of a marquee.
Some of the major indigenously developed products to be showcased at the event include battle tank Al-Khalid, JF-17 Thunder, Super Mushshak and K-8 aircraft, Fast Attack Craft Missile boats, UAVs, armoured personnel carriers and premium grade military hardware.
Besides showcasing of products, there will be several high-level meetings among foreign delegates, key government officials and participants on the sidelines of the four-day IDEAS for forging alliances in defence production. An important international defence seminar will be held at a hotel on Nov 22. Sidelines conferences have been planned at the exhibition venue on Nov 23 and 24.
In reply to a question about the number of memorandums of understanding (MoU) signed during the previous IDEAS events and how many expected this time around, Brig Waheed Mumtaz said that MoUs were an ongoing process. “The Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of Defence Production both sign MoUs all year. The DEPO is only a facilitator, which holds defence exhibitions and seminars to create opportunities. Still the DEPO would like to see as many opportunities for signing such MoUs as possible during IDEAS,” he said.
About promoting indigenously developed products, he said defence exports were decentralised and the DEPO was not an executive authority. It is only a facilitator.
In reply to a question about the current situation along the Line of Control, he said the exhibition carried a message that Pakistan was very advanced in defence capabilities, far ahead of its enemies.
Briefing media on the traffic plan and alternative arrangements during IDEAS in order to facilitate the public during rush hours, SSP Erum Awan said that earlier the administration had proposed a few arrangements for review and after further planning the office of the deputy inspector general of police (traffic) had decided to keep both tracks of the University Road open to traffic.
“It may be closed for a few minutes during VIP movement, but will be reopened soon after,” she said, adding that banners would be put up to guide citizens about the traffic arrangements and re-routing plan a day prior to IDEAS.
Courtesy : Dawn News