Independent Business Group Sweden AB (IBG) signed a contract in April 2020 with the Qatar Civil Aviation Authority (QCAA) to develop and establish a Qatar Flight Information Region (FIR) with Flexible Use of Airspace (FUA) concept and procedures. In addition, IBG will support the increase of capacity and throughput of Hamad International Airport and Doha International Airport to allow for the growth of Qatar’s national airline, Qatar Airways, and prepare the country for the increase in traffic surrounding the Qatar 2022 FIFA World Cup.
To achieve these strategic goals, IBG is upgrading the existing infrastructure with new air navigation equipment and supporting the QCAA with additional operational resources. The project will, through four primary work packages, deliver comprehensive implementation plans, a new infrastructure and associated procedures for air traffic services and airspace management. IBG is also responsible for the procurement of equipment on behalf of the QCAA and is arranging for secondment of staff and training for the QCAA operational units.
A critical aspect of the project to support the State of Qatar reach its objectives is the re-design, implementation and support of a new Airspace to accommodate Strategic Project Requirements and growth expectations. This entails working closely with the Qatar Emiri Air Force (QEAF) and representatives from the Ministry of Defense (MoD) as well as the Qatar Civil Aviation Authority.
This design is now in its final stages of approval with the Go Live date strictly set for March 2022.
One year has passed since contract signature, and IBG can proudly say that the project is being delivered fully on time despite significant challenges with travel and resources due to the Covid-19 crisis. To achieve this, IBG has established a local Project Management Consultancy team comprising of nineteen (19) fulltime staff and over forty (40) Subject Matter Experts and technical contributors, working both on site and from all corners of the world. To show our commitment to the QFIR project and the client, IBG has established its regional headquarters in Qatar, which will support all business activities and ensure IBG’s future growth in both Qatar and the wider region.
Leading up to the project, IBG collaborated closely with the Embassy of Sweden in Doha and the wider Team Sweden.
“We are happy that IBG from Norrköping,Sweden has been entrusted with providing high technology solutions for a more efficient management of air traffic in Qatar. The establishment of IBG in Qatar shows that there are excellent export opportunities in Qatar also for Swedish SMEs.” said H.E. Anders Bengtcén, Ambassador of Sweden to Qatar.
Leading the project team at IBG’s regional HQ is Deya Gebara, Global Project Director.
“IBG being part of this prestigious project makes us very proud and determined to deliver the highest value of quality, technical and operational knowhow to all project stakeholders. We are confident that all Strategic Project Requirements can be achieved. The project has good momentum thanks to the support and strong working environment set by the QCAA, MoD and IBG. “
The past year has been filled with challenges and whilst every year is different, this year has been filled with more change than normal. The effect of COVID-19 has challenged us all both professionally and personally. It has been reassuring to see how the QFIR project and all its members have risen to meet every roadblock, while always looking out for each other.
We recently signed a contract amendment with the QCAA opening our turnkey business segment. This is very exciting for us and will look forward to engaging specialist vendors to fulfil and support project objectives, whilst in parallel implementing a new Airspace design.
Working closely with Deya is Programme Manager Keith Marshall, who is responsible for the delivery of the QFIR project on a daily basis. Keith Marshall is an experienced aerospace executive who joined IBG in December 2020.
“This is a hugely important infrastructure project for the State of Qatar and the award of this contract to IBG is a compelling testament to the confidence that the QFIR Project Stakeholders have in our ability to deliver what they need. It’s therefore with some satisfaction that on a daily basis I find myself humbled by the level of commitment I witness in my IBG colleagues, as they strive each day to deliver high quality product to a tight schedule. I am therefore unashamedly proud and eager to make my own contribution as their QFIR Programme Manager.”
The project has four Group Work Package Leaders (GWPL) for different disciplines; Hein Reid for Capacity, Lex Hendriks for Airspace, Solle Svan for Training & Workforce, and Martin Sole for Equipment. Each GWPL is responsible for driving his project tasks together with associated subject matter experts.
To assure data security and confidentiality, IBG uses a joint workspace provided by the Swedish company Synkzone where all documents are saved and updated. IBG also uses the Swedish work-tracking system Timewinder to help assure that all labor regulations and health/safety standards are strictly followed.
The QCAA has established a Qatar Flight Information Region Project Team (QPT), which is composed of QCAA, Qatar Ministry of Defense, and Qatar Airways Group (representing both the airline and airports), to support the delivery of project. Working closely with IBG, this team assures the successful project completion through provision of technical information and regular progress reviews.