Maldives Airports Company Ltd. (MACL), the operator of the main Velana International Airport (VIA), has successfully conducted its inaugural Airport Emergency and Resilience Forum, a two-day event aimed at enhancing security, emergency response preparedness, and multi-agency coordination.

The forum, inaugurated by Minister of State for Defence Muaz Haleem, was held at CROSSROADS Maldives. It brought together a diverse group of stakeholders, including government agencies, airlines, and emergency responders, with the shared objective of enhancing VIA’s emergency management strategies.

Ibrahim Shareef Mohamed, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of MACL, underscored the transformative impact of VIA’s new infrastructure on fortifying security through integrated measures during his address at the opening ceremony. He further emphasised the crucial role of partnerships with government agencies, emergency services, airlines, and industry experts in significantly elevating security standards.

The forum was designed to ensure the availability of trained personnel for swift deployment at its airports, thereby aiding in addressing potential unlawful interference with civil aviation, according to MACL.

The forum’s first day saw the Airport Emergency and Business Continuity team and stakeholders deliver insightful presentations on contingency plans. The second day featured officials from Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital (IGMH) and the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) delving into emergency management.

Experts from MACL, the Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF), the Maldives Police Service (MPS), the Aviation Security Command (AVSECOM), and the Directorate of Aviation Security Administration (DASA) also shared strategies for a collaborative multi-stakeholder approach to responding to security emergencies.

A highlight of the forum was a tabletop exercise designed to test multi-agency coordination during a security situation. This exercise underscored the importance of preparedness in ensuring the safety and security of all airport operations.