Category Archives: Govt

ITB China joins HSMAI for 2019 edition

For the second time in a row the Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) and ITB China, set to take place from May 15 to 17, 2019 in Shanghai, have joined together to promote education and professional development in the hospitality industry. HSMAI is a 90-year-old, global, non-profit association with more than 7,000 members committed to growing business for hotels and their partners. It has recently recruited Asia’s top hotel revenue managers to join forces to produce a training programme that underpins a new online industry education platform. Appropriately, on May 17 the dedicated ‘Education & Job Day’ is being held for the second time at the ITB China Conference 2019. It is focusing on the exchange of educational knowledge and the promotion of career opportunities of current and future talents of the Chinese travel industry. HSMAI will be conducting a session in the presentation hub on May 17, 2019 starting at 10 am covering the topics of Revenue Management, Data Intelligence and Hotel Sales Distributions. These topics form part of HSMAI’s Certificate in Revenue Management (Hospitality) launched in 2017 and created by the senior leaders of revenue management in hotels around the world. “HSMAI have been busy updating our current courses and developing new education and courses to assist hotel professionals to grow their careers. In 2019, we’ll be developing new programmes for hoteliers to continue their learning in digital marketing, distribution and managing commercial functions”, says Jackie Douglas, President HSMAI Asia Pacific. Huilian Duan, President of the HSMAI Greater China Chapter Board, urged her industry colleagues to get behind the education, “All Sales, Revenue and Digital Directors should be certified in their respective fields.  Only HSMAI can …

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Abu Dhabi tourism and Etihad organise 3D mapping promotions in Jeddah

Etihad Airways and the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi are taking Jeddah residents on an immersive tour of Abu Dhabi across VOX Cinemas using 3D projection mapping. This is the first time this technology is being utilised to promote a destination in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and the wider Middle East region.  This month, projection mapping will turn VOX cinemas into a theatrical stage to provide viewers with a simulated first person experience of what it’s like flying with Etihad Airways to Abu Dhabi. Tim Burnell, Vice President Marketing, Etihad Airways, said, “Abu Dhabi is a dynamic capital with a wealth of exciting opportunities to offer to every type of traveller. We are delighted that today’s technology can showcase what our airline and capital has to offer, by bringing the experience to them, making them feel like they are actually here.” Viewers will board an Etihad aircraft and walk around the Business Cabin before being transported to world-famous leisure attractions including Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, Yas Waterworld and to Warner Bros. At World Abu Dhabi, famous cartoon and comic characters such as Bugs Bunny and Batman will interact with the audience. The journey continues to a mangrove forest, followed by miles of beautiful white sand beaches and a live cooking demonstration, before closing on Abu Dhabi’s rich skyline.

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Tripfez becomes Malaysia’s first Islamic Digital Economy compliant travel firm

Tripfez, a provider of halal travel content to several major OTAs in the Middle East, has marked a major milestone as Malaysia’s first Islamic Digital Economy (IDE) compliant travel firm. The Online Travel Agency (OTA), Asia’s leading provider of Muslim-friendly travel packages, which recently merged with the Middle East’s award-winning holiday booking site, holidayme, is the only company in the travel industry to receive a verification and listing by the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC). This distinction follows MDEC’s recent introduction of Malaysia’s first IDE Mi’yar as it consolidates its position as the world’s leading Islamic economy and reinforces Tripfez’s reputation as a leading halal travel brand, regionally and in global growth markets including the Middle East. To be listed as IDE compliant, companies are required to comply with the Shariah Compliant Startup Mi’yar and Mi’yar for Technology Product & Services, which is validated through a screening process to scrutinise business activities in the digital space, as well as the operational end-to-end processes within the company — from product and services and financial management to capital structure. Shariah advisory firm, the Amanie Group, which specialises in Islamic financial services, conducts the screening process. “IDE compliancy sets Tripfez apart from the competition, providing a clear message to our customers and our investors that we are the leading Muslim travel brand in every respect, from the products and services we offer to the way in which we conduct our business,” said Tripfez Founder & CEO, Faeez Fadhlillah, Asia’s most widely-known and influential entrepreneur in the halal tourism arena. “A robust Islamic Digital Economy provides Malaysia with a distinct competitive advantage and Tripfez is proud to be leading the way in the field of …

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DTCM launches sponsorship scheme for leisure events

Dubai’s Department of Tourism & Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) launched a new sponsorship scheme to drive continued innovation and sustainability across Dubai’s events industry. Reaffirming Dubai’s position as a global events hub, the scheme is designed to further empower leisure event organisers with additional incentivisation opportunities in the form of event sponsorship. The new process will build on the growth and competitiveness of the city’s event sector, which recorded an increase of over 100,000 ticket sales and 25 additional events in the first quarter of 2019 when compared to the same period last year. Continuing to effectively showcase Dubai’s proposition as a host city for international events from around the world, the scheme will target entertainment events and will be applicable for events that are ticketed and open to the public, with an eligible leisure event permit. With state-of-the-art venues across the city, Dubai is well placed to compete on the global stage to host international events, as it continues to grow its reputation as a world leading leisure and entertainment destination. The scheme will work in conjunction with the department’s ticketing and permits services to streamline management and coordination of event licensing activities and provide greater operational efficiency. His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai Tourism, said, “The sponsorship scheme forms part of our commitment to retain the city’s status as a leading global event destination and has been designed to build on this momentum and act as a catalyst for the local events industry.” The sponsorship scheme, which will directly support leisure event organisers, will take effect for events being held from May 1, 2019 through an online application process. Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO, Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment, …

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Dubai ranks first in Middle East and ninth in world’s top maritime capitals in 2019

Dubai has moved up in the ranking of the world’s top 10 maritime capitals in 2019, the latest in its string of achievements that has made the emirate a globally competitive maritime hub. The emirate took the 9th spot this year, up from its 10th rank in 2017, according to a recent report issued by Menon Economics and DNV GL, the global organization that specializes in benchmarking top maritime capitals of the world. The report surveyed 200 experts and high-profile officials from leading maritime companies worldwide. Around 40 per cent of the experts were from Europe, 30 per cent from Asia, and 30 per cent from the US, Middle East, and Africa. H.E. Sultan Bin Sulayem, Group Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of DP World; Chairman of Ports, Customs & Free Zone Corporation and Chairman of DMCA, said, “We are delighted to achieve this new global achievement that demonstrates the progress of the maritime sector in Dubai led with a leadership vision of H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai and H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council, and his support to the industry and keen efforts to enable our teams to achieve better results in all areas related to the maritime sector. I would also like to thank the DMCA team for its work and dedication to ensure improved local maritime services at all levels.”    

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Dubai Pass adds 15 more attractions and 48 experiences

The Dubai Pass, an all-inclusive, pre-paid pass, created by iVenture Card and Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) is offering users access to 15 more attractions, with 48 experiences now available to choose from through the upgraded pass. With a competitive starting price of AED 425 (US$116) for adults and AED 405 (US$110) for children, the newly re-launched pass offers great value on entrance to a number of the city’s high-profile attractions, tours and experiences enabling visitors to enjoy the best of Dubai for less. With the ultimate attractions pass, visitors to the city can now choose from 48 of Dubai’s leading experiences. Combining the best of the emirate’s sightseeing, theme parks, cruises, adventure and cultural experiences into a pre-paid pass, users can save up to 60 per cent overall on Dubai’s leading leisure spots. Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO, Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment (DFRE), said, “Dubai Pass has been enhanced to provide visitors with ease of access to a variety of the city’s tourist attractions through offering a range of experiences at great value for both families and independent travellers.” Dubai Pass offers three bespoke packages that allow users to discover Dubai’s diverse destination offering with special pricing packages for both adults and children. With options to purchase the Dubai Select, Dubai Flexi or Dubai Unlimited Pass, users are invited to explore the best of the city with more flexibility and at better value. Additionally, with the purchase of every Dubai Pass, visitors can also enjoy a 50% discount on tickets to one of the city’s leading shows, La Perle by Dragone, by simply presenting their Dubai Pass upon purchase of the tickets.

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Bahrain Tourism participates in UFI Middle East and Africa Conference 2019

As part of its strategy to further boost growth in the tourism and meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MiCE) sectors of Bahrain, the Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA) continues to participate in events and initiatives including global conferences, congresses and exhibitions that showcase infrastructure development with an aim to promote Bahrain as the tourism and MiCE destination of choice. The BTEA’s Director of Exhibitions and Conferences Marketing and Promotion, Fawzi Tulefat, represented the BTEA in one of UFI’s major annual events, UFI Middle East/Africa Conference 2019, which was held at the Dubai World Trade Centre on April 8 and 9,   2019 under the theme of ‘Embracing Change and Looking Forward to the Future’. Annually, the UFI Middle East and Africa Conference is attended by over 70 member and non-member trade fair exhibition organizers, exhibition centres, associations and service providers related to the exhibition industry. During the conference, Tulefat, a panelist on Venue / Organizers – Panel Discussion during the first day of the conference, actively discussed the new developments in Bahrain’s MiCE industry and highlighted the achievements of BTEA including updates on the Bahrain Exhibition and Convention Centre which is expected to be completed in early 2021.  The tourism attractions of Bahrain and the new Bahrain Exhibition and Convention Centre will take center stage from May 21 to 23, 2019 at the Bahrain Pavilion at the IMEX 2019, which will be held at Messe Frankfurt in Frankfurt, Germany.  The BTEA will be joined by seven co-exhibitors from the business tourism and hospitality industry in Bahrain. The IMEX 2019 is an annual global MiCE industry event bringing together over 14,500 participants including 3,500 exhibitors from over 160 countries from around …

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Dubai Tourism partners with Gulf Reps to attract GCC visitors

Dubai Tourism has announced a new GCC-wide partnership with Gulf Reps, one of the region’s leading travel consultancy agencies, as part of its ongoing drive to attract more visitors from across the Gulf to holiday in the emirate. The partnership will give Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) access to Gulf Reps’ extensive network of travel industry professionals and media, as it targets increased tourist numbers from The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain, and Kuwait. Under the agreement, Gulf Reps will operate a representative office within the GCC with a specific focus on developing relationships with the region’s tourism market, leading travel trade publications and travel companies with the purpose of promoting Dubai as the preferred destination of choice for visitors from neighbouring GCC countries. Overnight visitors from the GCC made up 18 per cent of all tourists to Dubai in 2018, highlighting the region’s position as one of the most important source markets for Dubai. The collaboration with Gulf Reps will allow Dubai Tourism to maximise its exposure to, and relationship with, important industry and trade partners across the GCC, giving the city even greater visibility in strategic media outlets and travel industry publications as well as digital media. As Dubai Tourism’s official representative in The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Oman, Kuwait, and Bahrain, Gulf Reps will help showcase Dubai’s diverse attractions, numerous festivals, year-round entertainment offerings and landmark attractions to holidaymakers. Issam Kazim, CEO of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism), said, “Dubai continues to rank among the most popular destinations for holidaymakers from across the GCC. Our partnership with Gulf Reps is part of our ongoing strategy to attract even …

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AIM opens in Dubai to explore the latest trends in FDI

Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai and in the presence of HH Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, the Annual Investment Meeting (AIM) 2019 opened yesterday. The 9th edition of the world’s biggest platform for foreign direct investment (FDI) will run until April 10 in Dubai under the theme ‘Mapping the Future of FDI: Enriching World Economies through Digital Globalisation’. The event also witnessed the presence of four presidents, one Deputy president and 40 ministers including H.E. Evo Morales, President, Plurinational State of Bolivia; H.E Muhammadu Buhari, President, Federal Republic of Nigeria; H.E Rustam Minnikhanov, President of Tatarstan, Russian Federation; H.E. Ramzan Kadyrov, Head of Chechen Republic, Russian Federation and H.E. Huchiev Muslim, Deputy Chairman of Chechen Republic, Russian Federation. In his opening speech, His Excellency Dr. Abdullah bin Mohammed Belhaif Al Nuaimi, Cabinet Member and Minister of Infrastructure Development said, “We are delighted to welcome all of you to the opening ceremony of the ninth edition of the Annual Investment Meeting. The forum, organized by the Ministry of Economy, has become a prominent event on the regional and international arenas as one of the largest investment gatherings in the world. We are honored by the wide global participation in this year’s edition, which includes delegations from more than 140 countries from around the world, who have gathered here to jointly explore the latest trends in foreign direct investment.” “At the national level, the UAE continues to rank first in the region in terms of FDI inflows, which in 2018 amounted to USD 10.4 billion according to …

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Ascott boosts KSA portfolio with Citadines Al Aziziyah Al Khobar

The Ascott Limited (Ascott), the world’s largest serviced residence owner-operator, continues to roll out its expansion portfolio in Saudi Arabia by announcing a new signing that will join its growing portfolio — Citadines Al Aziziyah Al Khobar. The property is set to open in late 2021 and will be Ascott’s seventh residence in the kingdom, and its third in the city of Al Khobar. The 92-unit residence is currently under construction on King Khalid Road in the popular Al Aziziyah district to the south of the city. The location benefits from convenient transport links: King Khalid Road itself is the city’s main arterial highway, while the nearby King Fahd Causeway links Saudi Arabia with Bahrain. Dammam railway station is a short drive away and connects the Eastern Province to the Saudi capital, Riyadh. When operational, Citadines Al Aziziyah Al Khobar will feature 36 studio apartments, 25 one-bedroom apartments and 30 two-bedroom apartments, as well as a 157 sq.m. penthouse. Facilities will include a residents’ lounge, swimming pool and gym, and a three-storey adjacent car park for visitors’ use. Guests will also be within easy reach of the neighbourhood’s public beaches, restaurants, shops and recreational facilities, including Half Moon Bay and Al Khobar Corniche. “We are very pleased to announce details of our latest serviced residence in Saudi Arabia in partnership with Nebras Tourism Company,” said Vincent Miccolis, Ascott’s Regional GM for Middle East, Africa and Turkey. “In the four years since we launched our first property in KSA we’ve established a market-leading presence with an expanding portfolio of international-standard properties in key destinations.” Al Saggaf, General Manager of Nebras Tourism Company, said, “We are delighted to partner with the Ascott …

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