The commercial aviation partnerships between U.A.E. and U.S. is playing a central role in the success of record trade numbers between the two sides totalling US$26.9 billion in 2013. According to the U.S.-U.A.E. Business Council, transportation equipment, including Boeing aircraft and GE engines was the largest subset of U.S. exports to the U.A.E. in 2013 at $9.4 billion - making up 38% of the total U.S. exports to the Emirates last year. Danny Sebright, President of the U.S.-U.A.E. Business Council, said, "Commercial aviation is a key pillar of the U.S.-U.A.E. relationship. This has been recently highlighted by increasing number of investments and partnerships, including Etihad Airways and Emirates Airline placing the largest orders for Boeing aircraft and GE engines ever in 2013 and advancing with plans for further expansion to U.S. gateways." On the training and research side, the council pointed out the importance of Boeing's new partnership with Etihad Airways, Honeywell UOP, and Masdar Institute of Science and Technology. The council believes that the launch of the Sustainable Bio-energy Research Consortium (SBRC) will provide an excellent forum for American, Emirati and global engineers to research the comprehensive viability of bio-fuel technology. "American companies, both large and small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), are increasingly looking for long-term sustainable business and investment opportunities globally, namely toward the Middle East and Asia. Demand is growing at a rapid pace and a common thirst for innovation and expansion is supported at the highest levels of government and industry. Global platform suppliers are also more closely aligning with their supply chains in key markets around the world, like the U.A.E.," added Sebright. In April, the U.S.-U.A.E. Business Council, in partnership with the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA), will co-lead a delegation of senior executives representing civil and defence aerospace firms to the Global Aerospace Summit 2014. The delegation is poised to increase the presence of American SMEs and supply chain companies at the Summit. The council will also host a networking reception and facilitate a "How To Do Business in the U.A.E." briefing for American companies attending the Summit in the Emirates for the first time. The U.S.-U.A.E. Business Council facilitates closer coordination between industry and government and provides a platform for public and private sector aerospace and defence thought leaders to exchange ideas. The council also acts as a clearinghouse for industry to voice concerns or interests key to the advancement of U.S.-U.A.E. commercial aerospace and defence trade. The Global Aerospace Summit will run from 7th-8th April 2014 at the St. Regis Hotel, Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi. It will focus on the challenges of driving industrialisation and growth while adapting to global socio-economic change. The wide ranging themes covered by the Summit will include new events for CEOs, dedicated, sector-specific strategy seminars, Defence Industry Closed Door Briefings and a Military, Satellite and Communications session. It will bring industry experts together to answer the challenges faced by the sector and shape future growth strategies. Leaders from companies in both established and emerging markets will share their experiences of supporting industrialisation, improving supply chain standards and creating value-added jobs for highly skilled individuals. The inaugural Summit in 2012 attracted more than 900 top executives from 52 countries. The 2014 event will also include delegates from emerging markets such as Russia, China, India, Eastern Europe and South America.