The old saying that when American sneezes the rest of the world catches a cold has never rung truer than during the current economic downturn. But one of the few markets that has remained relatively unscathed is Russia. Its outbound tourism market grew 17% in 2007, making it the ninth largest outbound market in the world, and initial findings for 2008 report of similarly strong growth. By 2010 Russia is set to overtake Germany.
One of the best ways to get to the heart of Russia’s travel trade is by attending Moscow International Travel & Tourism (MITT). The country’s largest and most important travel trade event, MITT attracts over 92,000 buyers from across Russia and is ranked among the world’s top five travel and tourism exhibitions.
The 16th MITT takes place at Expocentr, Moscow, 18-21 March 2009, and will feature over 3,000 exhibitors, drawn from 118 countries and regions. More than 70 national/regional tourism boards will be participating, and new destinations include Colombia, Panama, Costa Rica, Macao, Japan and Hainan. Meanwhile Indonesia and Sri Lanka have increased their stands dramatically as the arrivals from Russia grow every year.
New features this year include a fast track for badges holders, and video festival for national tourism boards on plasma screens.
Four days later, 25-27 March, Ukraine International Travel & Tourism, UITT, takes place at the IEC Kiev.
This year also marks the start of a new partnership between Dubai and the leading travel trade exhibitions in Russia.
The partnership will complement Dubai’s promotional activities in its priority outbound markets of Russia and Ukraine. The two countries contributed almost one third of a million tourists to Dubai in 2007 and both markets continue to produce healthy growth figures.
In addition to the status as MITT’s Official Partner Destination in 2009, Dubai will be exhibiting in the Forum Pavilion. The burgeoning emirate is increasing its stand by 50 percent this year - booking 450 sq meters for Moscow instead of 300.
International Event & Sales Director for MITT and UITT, Maria Badakh said. “Dubai has participated at MITT since its inception in 1993 and at Kiev at UITT since 1998. During this time, they have steadily increased their presence at the shows as these markets continue to deliver high spending tourists in increasing numbers. I am really looking forward to working with Dubai to make sure that their promotional activity at MITT and UITT delivers the results that they are looking for.”