Further Growth in Conferences for Dubai

Dubai is on course to becoming one of the world’s principal cities for conventions, according to Awadh Al Seghayer, director of the Dubai Convention Bureau (DCB).

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Addressing tourism and travel leaders at Skål International, Al Seghayer discussed the role Dubai is playing in attracting global convention markets with its growing image as a tourism destination.

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According to Al Seghayer, the convention sector has a more wide-reaching benefit than just boosting tourism; this includes the exposure and community learning provided by different conferences. Conventions have had a positive effect over the hotel industry, where the quieter summer months are now enjoying higher occupancy levels.

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Dubai registered significant growth in the events held in the city. He said: “In 2003, Dubai Convention Bureau catered to 22 events; we have already had 40 events to date in 2004. Looking ahead, growth rates seem very promising and Dubai’s world-class properties will continue to remain busy catering to the influx of conference exhibitors, participants and visitors.”

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DCB has been promoting Dubai throughout the world at trade shows and exhibitions; to date, contributors to Dubai’s increasing share of the global MICE market are Europe, primarily UK, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium and Austria; the Middle East, especially the AGCC; America; and South East Asia.

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Al Seghayer concluded: “We have the infrastructure in place to host the biggest meetings in the world and we have proved we have the organizational capacity, qualified personnel and expertise to host events on the largest possible scale.”

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DCB, a division of the Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), is a member of BestCities.net, a renowned global alliance of convention bureaux offering specialist services dedicated to professional meeting planners.

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The Dubai chapter of Skal, the international organisation of tourism leaders, was launched almost two years ago with the support of Dubai Tourism & Commerce Marketing (DTCM), and 20 founding members.

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Membership is on target to reach 100 by year end. Registered as Dubai Chapter 672 through the Skal headquarters in Torremolinos, Spain, the Dubai members join more than 25,000 tourism professionals in more than 525 clubs in 80 countries in their pursuit for the sound development of tourism worldwide.
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