Sunday, March 27, 2011

IMDEX Asia on its way to a bigger show this year-Calls for safe and secure seas

March 27, 2011
Neelam Mathews

As the Asian naval market outlook remains strong and promising with regional navies investing in broad range of ships and capabilities, Asia Pacific's only dedicated international maritime defense show -  International Maritime Defense Exhibition & ConferenceI (IMDEX) Asia will this year have over 20 new companies participating.

General Dynamics, Canada, Israel Shipyards, Precision Technologies (Singapore) and Hawke Transit from Spain are some of the 22 companies that will be in Singapore for the show from May 18-20. The new participants include those from Finland, France, UK, Russia and Singapore.

With global volatility a thing of today, the theme will be Safe and Secure Seas for All by All, says Jimmy Lau, managing director of Experia Events. The show has around 15 naval delegations. They may be joined by an Indian naval delegation with whom talks are on, he adds.

“Around 300-400 Indian visitors visit the show. This year, we would like to double that,” says Lau.

IMDEX Asia 2011 promises features such as flying and waterborne demonstrations. Lockheed Martin has booked the largest space this year, Lau says. While it’s a challenging time for Japan, “we have a good indication that many will be attending…They are battling a huge challenge back home with so many resources wiped out,” he adds.

Consultancy AMI International  forecasts the top 5 investors in their navies for the next decades will be India, China, Republic of Korea, Japan and Taiwan. “All these nations are building “full spectrum” navies capable of a wide array of missions, from humanitarian and disaster relief to long range air and ballistic missile defense,” its report says.

AMI expects India to spend $39.35 billion in new ships and systems compared to China’s $24.93billion in the next 20 years. However, since open source information on Chinese naval spending remains limited, it is likely China’s spending may well be higher than that of India.

Investment for the region is particularly strong in patrol craft for maritime security, multimission frigates, and larger amphibious ships (10,00020,000 tons full load displacement) answering the call in a wide range of support and disaster relief missions. Submarines spending in the region will also be substantial over the next two decades, with AMI projecting about 100 new hulls worth a total of $53 billion, which makes the show even more relevant.

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