Position: President of Civil Aviation, Kuwait
Biography: With more than 26 years’ experience in the field, Fawaz al-Farah joined the Directorate General of Civil Aviation in 1981 as an air transport researcher, after graduating with a BA in business administration from Kuwait University. In 1982, he went to Washington DC to do an MBA at the American University, returning to Kuwait a year later and resuming his post. In 1985, he was appointed superintendent of international relations in Kuwait’s Air Transport Department. In 1988, he became director of Air Transport, a job he held until 1996, when he was appointed director of aviation safety. In 1997, he became deputy director general for aviation safety and air transport affairs, while also being secretary general for the Supreme Council of Civil Aviation. Al-Farah has also served as a member of the board of directors at Kuwait Airways Corporation. In January last year, he became president of Civil Aviation.
Contact: (+965) 433 6699
Position: President, General Authority of Civil Aviation, Saudi Arabia
Biography: With more than 30 years’ experience in the aviation industry, Abdullah Rehaimi oversees an aviation sector that now boasts 27 airports, three of which are international. Rehaimi, an engineer by training, says the General Authority of Civil Aviation (Gaca) is in the process of converting from a traditional government agency to an entity that will operate in a more commercial manner to serve an expanding industry and encourage growth. Prior to joining Gaca in 2003, Rehaimi spent 28 years at Saudi Industrial Development Fund, rising from managerial positions across a range of industries before being appointed director. He currently holds directorships at the local National Co-operative Insurance Company, National Commercial Bank, the Saudi Entrepreneurship Development Institute and United Insurance Company of Bahrain.
Contact: (+966) 2640 5000
Khalifa Mohamed al-Mazrouei
Position: Chairman and managing director, Abu Dhabi Airport Company
Biography: Khalifa Mohamed al-Mazrouei was appointed to the position of chairman and managing director of Abu Dhabi Airport Company, the operation and management company responsible for Abu Dhabi airport and Al-Ain airport, in 2006. He is also chairman of the supervision committee for the expansion of Abu Dhabi International airport, which manages the implementation of the expansion of the airports. Prior to this, he held several positions at Mubadala Development Company, based in Abu Dhabi, managing projects including comprehensive market, operational and financial due diligence, strategic assessment, operational audits and restructuring plans. Al-Mazrouei sits on the boards of Emiri Flight, Al-Taif Technical Services, Tourism Development & Investment Company, and is chairman of the World Trade Centre Abu Dhabi.
Contact: (+9712) 505 5000
Position: Chairman, Civil Aviation Authority, Qatar
Biography: Abdulaziz al-Nuaimi is chairman of both the Qatar Civil Aviation Authority and the new Doha International airport steering committee. Al-Nuaimi has held several positions in the aviation industry. In 2006, he was made executive chairman of the Arab Civil Aviation Commission. Two years earlier, he was appointed to the board of directors at Qatar Airways. In 2002, Al-Nuaimi began chairing the steering committee overseeing the airport’s development. He has supervised many air services agreements between Qatar and other countries since his appointment as director of the Civil Aviation Department and chairman of the Civil Aviation Authority. He holds diplomas in air traffic control and telecommunications, and a BSc in business administration. He has also completed several courses in civil aviation and higher management, and holds a private pilot’s licence.
Contact: (+974) 455 7333
Abdulrahman Mohammed al-Gaoud
Position: Under-secretary for civil aviation affairs, Bahrain
Biography: Abdulrahman Mohammed al-Gaoud was one of the first cadet pilots recruited by Gulf Air to be sent to the Oxford Flight Training Academy in the UK to obtain his commercial pilot’s licence, in 1970. He also was seconded to Aer Lingus in Dublin and British Airways in London to undergo training and gain further flying experience. Al-Gaoud then returned to work with Gulf Air, holding various positions, including executive vice-president, operations, and acting chief executive officer. In 1996, Al-Gaoud was appointed assistant under-secretary for aviation services for civil aviation affairs at the Transport Ministry. In 2002, he was promoted to under-secretary for civil aviation affairs, a position he currently holds. In addition to his normal duties, Al-Gaoud sits as an observer on the board of Bahrain Airport Services.
Contact: (+973) 1732 9009
Position: Chief commissioner and CEO of the Civil Aviation Regulatory Commission, Jordan
Biography: Suleiman Obeidat was recently appointed as the first chief commissioner of the new Civil Aviation Regulatory Commission (Carc) of Jordan. Carc is the legal successor to the Jordan Civil Aviation Authority (JCAA), where he was the last director general, having taken up the post at the end of 2004. Prior to joining the JCAA, he enjoyed a flying career of nearly 40 years, during which he held key board, management and line-captain positions with Royal Jordanian Airlines. Obeidat has also held senior posts within the Royal Jordanian Air Force. He has represented Jordan in several key regional and international bodies, including the Arab Civil Aviation Commission and the International Civil Aviation Organisation. He supports the Open Skies initiative and the industry’s push for greater safety, security and efficiency in air services in the GCC countries.
Contact: (+962) 06489 2282