An interview with Sheikh Aimen bin Ahmed Al Hosni, CEO Oman Airports. By Ross Falconer
Oman Airports has a strong presence at this year’s ACI Airport Exchange, where it is a Platinum Sponsor. Sheikh Aimen bin Ahmed Al Hosni, CEO Oman Airports, is participating in the Middle East Airport Leaders Masterclass at the event and is Vice-Chair of the ACI World Governing Board, as well as Secretary Treasurer of the ACI Asia-Pacific Regional Board.
“It’s certainly important to focus on developing Oman Airports and keep a close eye on this process,” he begins. “There are different ways to achieve what we aim for, such as focusing on increasing revenues, attracting airlines, and improving customer services. Absolutely technology is a very important tool to develop – we have been investing heavily in our new technologies and innovation approaches, in terms of our systems and processes, to make sure we meet and exceed expectations.”
Since opening its new terminal, Muscat International Airport has won numerous awards, including Best Airport in the Middle East 2019 at the 26th World Travel Awards Middle East in April. “There’s no success without hard work,” says Al Hosni. “We have been focusing lately on self-service aspects, where we aim to enhance the experience of all travellers and improve operational flow.” Indeed, projects include self-service kiosks and indoor navigation facilities for a smoother journey.
Oman Airports is also undertaking myriad initiatives to ensure efficient and effective safety and security processes. “Safely connecting passengers is our top priority and our duty,” Al Hosni explains. “We collaborate with the top airlines to deliver the best experience and implement the best practices. Our safety initiatives are always present in all areas of airport operation, such as manoeuvring areas, runway safety, FOD management, etc. We use the latest technologies to detect and record hazards including lasers, drones, and birdstrikes, as recording and reporting data is very important to reduce and eliminate recurrence.”
Additionally, Oman Airports has regular campaigns to raise safety awareness across different sectors, covering the airfields, terminals, maintenance and passenger safety, to name a few. “The management of Oman Airports ensures to make our airport safe for its staff and passengers,” Al Hosni emphasises.
Eco-friendly operation and strategies
Environmental sustainability is a key priority for Oman Airports, with both Muscat International Airport and Salalah Airport accredited at Level 2 Reduction of ACI’s Airport Carbon Accreditation.
“Our goal is to be among the world’s most environmentally-friendly airports, in order to help reduce carbon emissions and save our beloved planet, as we truly acknowledge the aviation industry’s environmental impact,” says Al Hosni. “We, like many airports across the world, have adopted greener and eco-friendly elements into our operation, design and strategies. Importantly, we and our stakeholders have adopted a project to convert all fossil fuel use to electric. We are also creating a serious programme to save energy and reuse water in the air conditioning systems.”
Looking ahead, Muscat International Airport aims to redefine the passenger experience through state-of-the-art infrastructure and facilities, including spacious parking areas with a capacity of 4,500 spaces, high-range Wi-Fi across the passenger terminals, and prestigious lounges. These efforts are being undertaken as part of the Oman Airports Strategy 2020, which aims to position Muscat International Airport among the top 20 airports in the world by 2020.