Abu Dhabi has long been recognised for its rich marine heritage that dates back several centuries. Well before oil was discovered, fishing and pearl diving were the mainstays of the economy in the emirate that boasts a stunning 400-kilometre-long azure coastline and encompasses more than 200 verdant islands. Despite the unprecedented economic prosperity ushered in by the discovery of oil, the emirate’s leadership has remained steadfast in its commitment to the preservation of its marine heritage for the benefit of future generations.
As one of the busiest marine hubs in the region, Abu Dhabi has prioritised the development of a well-established luxury yachting and leisure marine industry in line with the objectives of the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030, which aims to build a sustainable and diversified economy and drive non-oil growth. The planned development of the emirate’s marinas, cruise terminals, and recreational boating facilities has laid a strong foundation for the robust growth of its leisure marine industry in the years to come.
Among its many impressive infrastructure offerings is ADNEC Marina, the marine facility connected to Abu Dhabi’s premier event venue Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC) via a pedestrian bridge. The only one of its kind in the region, ADNEC Marina offers a deep channel that can accommodate both military ships and yachts, as well as boats of all sizes.
Opened in 2009, the purpose-built facility was developed as part of ADNEC’s efforts to offer world class venue infrastructure that helps the emirate sustain its business tourism growth and improve its competitiveness to attract major international events. Spanning an area of 31,000 square meters, ADNEC Marina features a channel that is six meters deep, allowing the facility to comfortably accommodate boats and yachts of all sizes.
ADNEC Marina has boosted ADNEC’s capacity to host a wide variety of indoor, outdoor and marine events congruently, supporting Abu Dhabi’s efforts to become an ultimate destination for luxury yacht owners. Some of the significant events that benefit from the truly unique amenities ADNEC Marina offers include the Abu Dhabi International Boat Show (ADIBS) that offers a dedicated platform to showcase the latest products and services catering to the luxury yachting, leisure marine and fishing industries. Since its inception in 2018, the event has become a fixture on the calendars of leading local, regional and international boat and yacht manufacturers, suppliers and specialists.
Yet another important event that leverages the state-of-the-art facilities of ADNEC Marina with great success is the Naval Defence Exhibition (NAVDEX), the maritime event co-located with International Defence Exhibition & Conference (IDEX). NAVDEX uses ADNEC Marina to host live demonstrations and performances by many small and medium-sized vessels taking part in the event as well as to showcase the latest maritime defence technologies and innovations.
In adding outstanding marina facilities to ADNEC’s award-winning event venue, ADNEC Marina has become an ideal location to host world-class marine events in the welcoming waters of the Arabian Gulf and serves as a gateway for international companies keen to tap into the UAE’s immensely promising leisure marine industry. Through hosting events such as ADIBS and NAVDEX, ADNEC aims to ensure that the UAE maximises its recreational boating activities and related business opportunities, rekindling public interest in the country’s rich marine heritage and creating ample scope to expand the emirate’s waterfront recreational offerings.
Organised and hosted by ADNEC, ADIBS 2019 will run from 16 to 19 October at ADNEC Marina. The inaugural edition of ADIBS attracted more than 270 exhibitors from 25 countries across the region, as well as from Europe and the United States, providing a world-class platform for local and international companies in the leisure marine industry to showcase their latest products and services.
ADNEC was established by the Government of Abu Dhabi to promote business tourism and position Abu Dhabi as a leading host destination for major international events. Over the years, ADNEC has helped the emirate generate a significant non-oil related economic impact, contributing AED3.41 billion to the Abu Dhabi economy in 2018. Cumulatively, the award-winning venue has contributed AED32 billion to the local economy since its inception in 2005.