Dubai will host the prestigious ICOMIA (International Council of Marine Industry Associations) World Marina Conference 2020 in Autumn, bringing the international event to the Middle East for the very first time.


By winning the bid, the UAE Marine community reaffirms the country’s position as the most vibrant market for the marinas industry in the Middle East, with 35 marinas across the country of which 15 are dotted along Dubai’s coastlines and waterfronts.


As the host city for Expo 2020, Dubai, the acknowledged marine capital of the region, is well positioned to attract the world’s leisure sailing and yachting enthusiasts in the run-up to the global event which is due to open its doors in 13 months.


Mohammed Al Muallem, CEO and Managing Director of DP World, UAE Region, which operates Mina Rashid the home of P&O Marinas, welcomed the successful bid for the prestigious ICOMIA event as a recognition of the growing importance of the marina and yacht industry to the UAE and Dubai.


The ICOMIA World Marinas Conference is set to showcase the latest in marina product development and technology, running a three-day programme which is due to commence in Autumn 2020. The conference will undoubtedly connect East to West and North to South, offering the region’s upcoming marina industry to share expertise, innovation and technology with developed and traditional yachting markets.


Mohammed Al Mannaei, CEO of P&O Marinas and Chairman of Raseina, Dubai Maritime City Authority’s platform linking Dubai’s marinas, said: “This is a very proud moment for P&O Marinas along with all marinas in the UAE in receiving the honour to host the ICOMIA World Marinas Conference. This is the perfect opportunity for the UAE Marine Association, which is currently under formation and will set the tone for future endeavours.


“By bringing the world’s recreational boat industry leaders and companies together in Dubai, this will immensely benefit the UAE’s domestic marine sector, which was valued at $1.3-1.5 billion last year. As the highly anticipated Expo 2020 Dubai is due to start next year, this will prove to be an excellent attraction for leisure yacht enthusiasts from around the world. We want to express our sincere appreciation and gratitude to ICOMIA for accepting the UAE’s bid to host this prestigious event.”


The ICOMIA bid was made by the entire UAE Marine Community through a collaborative effort. P&O Marinas, Bvlgari Marina, D- Marin Marinas, Dubai Marina Yacht Club, Exalto Emirates, JA Marina Dubai, Meraas, StratConn LLC and marina professionals Mr Bruno Meier and Mr John Paul Rebollini, supported by Dubai Maritime City Authority and Dubai Tourism, committed to each other to represent the unified marine industry in the UAE.