Category Archives: Govt

Bahrain Tourism focuses on M!CE sector

H.E. Zayed bin Rashid Al Zayani, Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism, and Chairman of the Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA) headed the third periodic meeting of the Board of Directors of BTEA for 2019 at the Ministry of Industry and Commerce (MOIC). Commenting on the occasion, H.E. Zayed bin Rashid Al Zayani said, “The BTEA has focused on the development of new projects in order to contribute to enhancing Kingdom’s position as a leading tourism destination and a leader in the meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (M!CE) sector compared to other countries in the region.” During the meeting, the Board reviewed and discussed several topics on the agenda which included the budget for the year 2020. In addition, the Board were briefed on the latest developments regarding projects related to the tourism strategy, which seeks to attract an increased number of tourists as well as implement a set of projects that will contribute to strengthening the position of Kingdom. By launching the Hospitality and Culinary Institute, the BTEA also aims to develop the tourism sector in order to elevate the industry by training the Bahraini workforce and creating a generation that can further boost this sector and represent the Kingdom. The Board also discussed the latest special developments that aim to attract more foreign tourists through the representative offices of the BTEA, alongside the annual calendar of events and activities organised by BTEA, as well as the tourism indicators for the Kingdom of Bahrain in the third quarter of the year. Towards the end of the meeting, the Board expressed their gratitude to the management and employees of BTEA for their sincere efforts in achieving the BTEA’s plans …

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DTCM launches QR code for information on Dubai

Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) has announced the launch of dedicated QR code plaques in 54 popular locations across the emirate, enabling visitors to discover more about the city’s iconic sites and landmarks by adding multimedia dimensions to self-guided tours. The quick response digital barcodes can be easily scanned by any smartphone, navigating users to dedicated microsites on the VisitDubai website for background information about each location. The multilingual microsites feature a range of content including images and interactive videos. The project works in line with Dubai’s ‘Smart City’ initiative to deliver an efficient, seamless and impactful city experience for residents and visitors through the provision of innovative digital services. The QR plaques help with the reduction of waste generated by printed tour guide books while enhancing the experience of tourists to the city by leveraging Dubai’s powerful tourism website, connecting users to popular points of interest. The QR codes can now be found across the city, including Gold Souk, Naif Souk, Textile Souk, Spice Souk, the Sheikh Mohammed Centre for Cultural Understanding (SMCCU), Ibn Battuta Mall, Dragon Mart, Ski Dubai, At The Top-Burj Khalifa, City Walk, Jumeirah Beach Residence, Marina Walk, Etihad Museum, Sunset Beach, Zabeel Park, Safa Park, Creek Park, Souk Madinat Jumeirah, Sheikh Saeed House, Kite Beach, Alserkal Avenue, the Jumeirah Mosque, to name a few. Commenting on the launch of the QR codes, Yousuf Lootah, Executive Director – Tourism Development & Investments said, “As the travel sector gains momentum, disruptive innovation remains at the forefront of enhancing international visitation to Dubai – and is a core element of Dubai Tourism’s ‘digital, mobile and social first’ agenda. As such, the launch of the …

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DTCM holds strategic meeting with Hilton

Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) held a strategic meeting with Hilton, as part of its continuing series of engagements with key industry partners to provide them an overview and outlook of Dubai’s tourism industry and explore ways of further increasing the level of stakeholder collaboration and leveraging all efforts that are underway to achieve the goals of Dubai’s Tourism Vision 2022-25. The meeting was held in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Airports, President of the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority and Chairman and CEO of Emirates Group, and was attended by His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai Tourism as well as Christopher J. Nassetta, President and Chief Executive Officer for Hilton, Simon Vincent, President Europe, Middle East and Africa and Mr Rudi Jagersbacher, President Middle East, Africa and Turkey. The meeting highlighted the invaluable role that is being played by the hospitality sector, particularly by global partners such as Hilton in supporting Dubai’s endeavour to become the world’s No. 1 most visited, revisited and preferred city as envisioned by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, UAE Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai. Hilton has been consistently present in Dubai for more than 40 years and is committed to the long-term growth and development of travel and tourism in the city. Hilton currently has 18 hotels in Dubai with a further 14 hotels in its development pipeline. During the meeting, Dubai Tourism shared new destination insights and highlighted the strong growth in tourism traffic to Dubai in the first three quarters of 2019, the key strategies that were implemented to drive sustained visitation …

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UAE and Poland to strengthen bilateral relations in maritime transport sector

UAE and Poland strengthen their bilateral relations. The discussion was preceded by H.E. Dr. Abdullah Belhaif Al Nuaimi, UAE Minister of Infrastructure Development and Chairman of Federal Transport Authority (FTA) – Land and Maritime and H.E. Marek Gróbarczyk, Polish Minister of Maritime Economy and Inland Navigation. Minister Al Nuaimi was accompanied by an official UAE delegation composed of officials from Abu Dhabi Ports, DP Ports, Sharjah Ports, and Customs Department. The delegation was earlier received by Dr. Abdul Rahim Yousef Al Awadhi, UAE Ambassador to Poland. Expressing his happiness to visit Poland, H.E. Al Nuaimi stressed the UAE’s interest to further strengthen its ties with Poland, especially across various economic fields, including the maritime and land transport sectors. H.E. Al Nuaimi said that having robust relations in the industry would serve their common interests, with both sides benefitting from the many opportunities to be brought forth by such ties. H.E. Al Nuaimi also took the opportunity to commend Poland for ensuring freedom of navigation and taking measures to facilitate and promote maritime transport. During the visit, a series of meetings were held to discuss economic and trade relations and explore opportunities for Polish companies to invest in the UAE, especially in the infrastructure sector. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was also signed between the UAE’s FTA – Land and Maritime and Poland’s Ministry of Infrastructure Development to reinforce their maritime cooperation, including freedom of navigation. Both sides also agreed to take all necessary measures to facilitate and promote maritime transport, avoid unnecessary delays, simplify and speed up customs, and support the equal treatment and exchange of ships in their ports and territorial waters. H.E. Al Nuaimi added, “The agreement will …

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Ras Al Khaimah declared as Gulf Tourism Capital

Ras Al Khaimah has been declared as the ‘Gulf Tourism Capital’ by the Ministers of Tourism of GCC member states during a recent meeting in Muscat, where they discussed measures aimed at coordinating tourism efforts in GCC countries. The meeting was attended by a UAE delegation led by Mohammed Khamis Al Muhairi, Advisor to the Minister of Economy for Tourism Affairs, on behalf of Sultan bin Saeed Al Mansouri, Minister of Economy, said a report in WAM. Al Mansouri stated that Ras Al Khaimah’s selection as the capital of Gulf tourism highlights the UAE’s leading stature as a popular tourism destination, noting that the previous years have witnessed ongoing growth in the number of tourists visiting the country from around the world, and praising the decision of GCC tourism ministers and officials. Presenting the key tourism achievements, Al Muhairi said that in 2018, the number of hotel guests visiting the UAE reached 25.6 million, an increase of 3.8 per cent compared to 2017. He also said that the report of the World Tourism and Travel Council in 2019 revealed that the tourism sector made up 11.1 per cent of the UAE’s GDP in 2018, amounting to Dh 164.7 billion ($44.8 billion). This contribution is expected to rise by 3 per cent in 2019, and tourism provided 9.6 per cent of total jobs in 2018, corresponding to around 611,500 positions. Raki Phillips, CEO of Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority said, “It is a great honour for the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah to be recognised and named as the “Gulf Tourism Capital” by the tourism ministers and senior officials of the Gulf Cooperation Council. Under the wise leadership of Sheikh …

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SCTDA announces the new standards for classification of hotel establishments

Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) has announced its new standards for the classification of hotel establishments in the emirate, in line with the implementation of Resolution No. 38 of 2019. The resolution aims to classify hotel establishments in Sharjah in line with the latest standards. The new standards were announced following a workshop organised by SCTDA for representatives of hotels and other hospitality establishments in Sharjah. The workshop detailed the updated classification criteria for hotel establishments and the process of implementation. The new standards fall within the directives of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, to continuously enhance the experience of tourists visiting Sharjah, considering the tourism sector as one of the most important pillars of the national economy. H.E. Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman of SCTDA, said, “We are confident that the new classifications will reflect positively on the performance of hotel establishments, including enhancements in facilities and services, and further contribute to boosting the hotel industry’s contribution as one of the most important components of the tourism infrastructure in the emirate. SCTDA has developed the classification in line with international standards and local requirements of establishments, with the support of our partners in the government and private sectors, in line with our mission to empower the hotel industry and realise Sharjah Tourism Vision 2021, which targets 10 million tourist arrivals in the emirate by 2021. SCTDA continues to work on updating the classification and licensing criteria for existing hotel establishments in the emirate and attaining the highest international standards, with the goal of enhancing quality services of hotel establishments and providing more options for …

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City Centre Ajman completes AED 643 million enhancement project

City Centre Ajman celebrates an important milestone with the completion of its multi-phase redevelopment this year. The mall transforms from a community centre to a regional shopping and lifestyle destination housing a diverse mix of 130 international brands and restaurants. The second stage has seen the mall refine its offering and diversify its retail mix to include a dedicated home category, much-loved fashion and lifestyle brands and all-new dining offerings. As part of an ongoing AED 643 million enhancement project, the redevelopment offers visitors with an upgraded shopping and leisure destination as part of Majid Al Futtaim’s continued efforts to evolve its customer journey and experiences. The improvement has also seen finishing touches added to the new wing as well as the enhancement of public areas and mall facilities. Fuad Sharaf, Managing Director of UAE, Oman and Bahrain Shopping Malls, Majid Al Futtaim Properties, said, “This redevelopment emerges from listening to our customers and understanding that they expect more from malls in their community. We want to provide them with a single destination that satisfies the wants and needs of their busy modern life. With the added contemporary design, increased convenience and retail mix, the mall’s transformation reiterates the promise that City Centre Ajman, like all Majid Al Futtaim properties, exists ultimately to create great moments for everyone, every day.” The list of new brands at City Centre Ajman includes popular home décor department stores Centrepoint and Home Centre, making their debut in the Emirate. By evolving into a diverse, regional mall, City Centre Ajman is also on-track to uplifting the economy of Ajman and the Northern Emirates, creating 250 new jobs in the Emirate.  

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Turkey draws 264,138 medical tourists in first half of 2019

Inbound medical tourism in Turkey rises, as the nation’s healthcare facilities have treated 264,138 medical tourists in the first six months of 2019, with the year-end projections estimated at one million incoming medical tourists. This forecast will generate upwards of USD 3.5 billion in revenues, surpassing the USD 2.5 billion generated by the end of the previous year, which saw 551,748 tourists travelling into Turkey from over 120 countries to avail healthcare treatments. Salih Ozer, Attaché of Culture and Information, Turkey to the UAE, said, “Tourists come to Turkey for a lot more than its sights; medical tourism into our cities has been climbing steadily over the last decade. We have been investing heavily in the growth of our healthcare sector, and we now offer high-quality treatments at very affordable prices. Medical tourists from our GCC neighbours, in particular, come to Turkey to avail cosmetic treatments. They are drawn in by the opportunity to combine these treatments with Turkish holidays.” The Turkish cities of Istanbul, Ankara, Antalya, Izmir, Yalova and Adana receive the highest number of medical tourists each year, from GCC nations, including the UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain and Qatar, as well as from Germany, Russia. Azerbaijan and Iraq. The top ten clinics for medical tourists listed services under ophthalmology, obstetrics and gynaecology, oncology, cosmetic surgery, orthopaedics and cardiology as the top treatments in 2018.

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Dubai attracts 12 mn international overnight visitors in 2019

Dubai welcomed 12.08 million international overnight visitors in the first nine months of 2019, according to the latest visitation figures released by Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism). The strong 4.3 per cent increase in volume growth compared to the same period last year was supported by highly participatory contributions from both traditional and emerging markets, that has continued to capture strong shares of the tourist wallet, further stimulating Dubai’s GDP impact, and the city’s remarkable consistency in transforming itself to respond to global competition. The positive performance, which drew over 1.23 million visitors to the city in September, an above-market average increase of 7.3 per cent over the same month in 2018, coincided with Dubai being ranked the fourth most visited city in the world for the fifth year in a row in Mastercard’s Global Destination Cities Index 2019, a clear indication that Dubai is continuously renewing its attractiveness to remain a leading global destination. Dubai Tourism’s multi-dimensional market-specific strategies and customised campaigns continued to yield tangible results particularly showcasing the city’s ability to reinvent itself and remain ‘top-of mind’ to both new and repeat audiences across regular strongholds – India, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, United Kingdom and Oman. Together with China that remained the world’s largest tourism volume driver, these five leading feeder countries surpassed the five million threshold for the first nine months of 2019. His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai Tourism, said, “With Dubai cementing its ranking as the fourth most visited city in the world, the positive growth achieved in the first three quarters this year is exemplary of the unfailing support and confidence of our leadership – His Highness …

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Hala China signs MoU to deepen cultural exchange between UAE and China

Hala China has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Shaanxi Tourism Group which will allow both parties to explore future collaborations on a range of tourism initiatives to drive two-way travel between Dubai and Shaanxi. The agreement marks another notch in the ever-deepening and productive bilateral relationship between China and the UAE, owing to Hala China’s efforts. It was signed at China (Shaanxi)-UAE Economic and Trade Conference, held on November 11, 2019, in Dubai. According to the terms of the MoU, both parties aim to “vigorously support and promote tourism and culture interexchange activities” in Dubai and Shaanxi while intensifying “cooperation between local travel agencies and travel organisations” to launch various tourism popularisation activities. China (Shaanxi)-UAE Economic and Trade Conference drew the participation of a host of high-level delegates and executives from the UAE and Shaanxi, including Jin Lei, Counsellor of the Economic and Commercial Department of the Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in Dubai; Zhao Xiaoming, Deputy Secretary-General of the Shaanxi Provincial Communist Party of China (CPC) Committee and Director of the General Office of the Shaanxi Provincial CPC Committee; Yao Hongjuan,  Director  of  the  Foreign  Affairs Office of the Shaanxi Provincial  People’s Government; and Xue Hua, President of the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT) Shaanxi Sub-council. Sheikh Majid Al Mualla, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Hala China, said, “We are excited to work together with our partners from Shaanxi as we look to strengthen the exchange and cooperation in the fields of logistics, tourism, aviation and investment between Shaanxi and the UAE. Long considered one of the cradles of Chinese civilisation and one of the important locations on …

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