Dubai: Small-scale aviation companies participating at the ongoing Dubai Air Show said that they are looking to build more than just business ties between India and the UAE during their time at the five-day show taking place at the Al Maktoum International Airport at Dubai World Central here until November 18.

This comes as India's newest airline Akasa Air placed a near $9 billion order with Boeing for 72 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft to build its fleet on a day when the total value of contracts awarded for commercial aircraft and defence purposes jumped by $17.5 billion, reaching Dh266 billion ($72b) after the first three days of what is the biggest aviation show since events resumed after the Covid-19 pandemic.

As many as 15 companies from India specialising in various aspects of aviation and defence are exhibiting at the region's top aviation event that's hosting over 1,200 companies from 148 countries. Many of them are first-timers looking to forge long-term relationships with companies and agencies in the UAE and the wider region.

"We came here looking for not a one-time tie up, but with an intention to stay on and expand our base," said Mitesh Rathod, CEO of Swast Aviation, a company based in Gujarat's Navsari that specialises in manufacturing aviation lubricants and adhesives, including hydraulic brake fluids.

"We also export our products. So we felt this was the best place for someone like us looking to do business with private and small commercial airlines that operate beyond the borders of India," he added.

Bengaluru-based Bevel Gears (India) Pvt Ltd may not be a first-timer at this biennial event, but it's a new stage for them all over again with the easing of Covid-19 travel restrictions worldwide.

"We have been in the field of designing and manufacturing gears and gear boxes for over 40 years and have been a regular at this event. But this time we are hoping to turn a new chapter in our history with the scope of supplying our products to countries in this region," said Abdulla Jamal, the Operations Director of the company that specialises in bevel gears that find applications in a range of sectors, including locomotives, marine, automobiles, printing presses, cooling towers, power plants, steel plants, railway track inspection as well as aviation where bevel gear systems are widely used in drives of aircraft gas turbine engines (GTE).

It's quite the opposite for the UAE's Favia International. As suppliers of aircraft and helicopter parts and chemicals, the Ajman-based company is focused on flying its business to Indian shores.

"We have been handling one-off projects for companies in India so far, working remotely out of UAE, but with businesses opening up again, we are hoping to seize some great opportunity here and perhaps set up a second base there permanently," said Nazeeb Backer, the customer services manager of the company that also dabbles in aviation consumables and wires and connectors.

Contracts worth around $55 billion were signed during the first two days of the event with Boeing's deal with Akasa marking the biggest yet at this Air Show by the US giant.