The participation of 36 countries, the arrival of 276,969 visitors, and the presence of 555 local and international exhibitors at the 14th Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA’17) had proven itself as the most successful and impactful event since it started in 1991.
The signing of contracts and other documents increased by 81 percent amounting to RM3.8 billion as compared to LIMA’15. The arrival of 40,280 trade visitors had also surpassed its target, and 236,689 public visitors was an amazing figure as it was only opened to the public for two days from 24th March.
The success of LIMA’17 as the most prestigious military, defence and security exhibition in this region was not an easy task but very much due to the strong and effective cooperation between the Malaysian government and 36 countries to meet and assemble their sophisticated and futuristic technologies in the maritime and aerospace industries in Langkawi.
The cooperation could only be achieved by putting aside differences in geopolitics, hatred and divide sentiments and no war.
In this context, the Defence Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein in a statement said: “The global defence and security players came to Malaysia because of our multiracial community that upholds peace and harmony and more importantly we do not like to intervene with the internal problems of others.”
Hishammuddin also stressed, Malaysia being a peaceful country had also attracted 36 countries which have sophisticated assets to come to Langkawi and exhibit their latest military and defence technology.
LIMA’17 became an important platform to establish strategic cooperation in strengthening the Malaysian defence and security. This includes facilitating assets, research and development (R&D), and collaboration and technology development and enhancement.
This important event was also a platform for Malaysian defence agencies to compare and evaluate their strength, capabilities, and credibility with other countries’ capacity especially in the technology aspects.
LIMA’17 had also intrigued the interest of the Malaysians and international tourists to look closely at the latest aircrafts and vessels in the military and security industries. Looking at the numerous types of vessel and aircraft displayed under the same roof, many international visitors were very impressed and described LIMA’17 was successful in uniting the world.
In the aerial show segment, LIMA’17 had also made a new record when Black Eagles from South Korean Air Force collaborated with Jupiter from Indonesia. That was the first time they collaborated in an aerial show.
The Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) that made a gambit flypast using two SU-30 MKM Sukhoi, three F/A-18D Hornet, five Hawk 108/208, three Airbus A400M, seven Pilatus PC 7 MKII, and three helicopter EC725 immediately after the opening ceremony of LIMA’17 on 21st March was an important record for LIMA event.
As Malaysians, we should feel proud that the Ministry of Defence, with other local supporting agencies, was able to host an important and strategic five-day event in a modern, sophisticated and well-structured manner. Scheduled programmes took off successfully and this was very much appreciated by participating countries as well as visitors at the exhibition.
The success of LIMA’17 was indeed a reflection of the Ministry of Defence’s high integrity, thus built confidence and stronger cooperation between Malaysia and other countries.
Simultaneously, many countries had also expressed their concern that Malaysia should take the lead in enhancing the defence and security aspects in the region especially with the new strategies launched by the extremists and terrorist groups.
LIMA’17 had not only made the world focus on Malaysia but also marked Langkawi as an interesting tourist destination. Some European tourists chose Langkawi as their vacation destination because of LIMA’17.
LIMA is a biennial event that has generated more income in the hotel, food and transport industries in the beautiful island of Langkawi since the event started 26 years ago. -Malaysia World News