100th anniversary of ILA in Berlin celebrated
The future of the International Aerospace Exhibition in Berlin/Brandenburg is assured. This was the unanimous view of all the speakers at the ceremonies marking the 100th anniversary of the world’s oldest air show.
The occasion was celebrated by some 1,000 guests from politics and business, as well as media representatives, on Wednesday evening at the Palais am Funkturm in Berlin. The evening also featured the presentation of a commemorative coin and postage stamp, which will be issued on 4 June 2009 by the German government to mark “100 years of the ILA”.
Because it “just shaded our French colleagues” in 1909, the ILA has become known as “the precursor of all modern, international air shows”, according to the President of the German Aerospace Industries Association, Dr. Thomas Enders. The BDLI, together with Messe Berlin, is responsible for organising the show, which transferred to its current location in Berlin-Schönefeld in 1992 following German reunification, a move which, in Enders’ words, gave it “additional momentum”.
As Enders pointed out, the current economic downturn is also having an effect on the aerospace industries, making it even more important to prepare products now for the future. There are reasons optimism about continued growth for the industry once the crisis is over. “For us the ILA still is and will remain an indispensable component in our efforts to safeguard the future”, the President of the BDLI stated, and paid tribute to the partnership with Messe Berlin. “We are totally committed to preparing for the ILA 2010 and hope that this event will remain in Berlin-Schönefeld for many years to come”.
“We want the ILA to remain at this location at the BBI and that it will enjoy ideal conditions here”, said the Berlin Mayor and Senator for Economics Harald Wolf. The intention is that it should “not only retain but also expand” its position as Europe’s third largest aerospace trade show. Steps have been taken to ensure that, next year, this event, which is responsible for bringing some 160 million euros into the region, will take place “in its usual form”, despite the major construction work that is taking place at the site, and that it will again “send out all the right signals”.