DCT Abu Dhabi concludes successful participation at ATM 2018

77 industry stakeholders join Abu Dhabi delegation as part of four-day showcase

The participation of the Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) at Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2018 concluded after four successful days showcasing distinct business growth, increased tourist arrivals and significant new partnership deals.

Leading a large delegation to ATM, DCT Abu Dhabi was joined by 77 stakeholders representing more than 90 products in order to build further momentum behind increased guest arrival numbers. Abu Dhabi’s tourism sector is enjoying steady growth as the emirate continues to position itself as an attractive destination for visitors and investors alike. In 2017, Abu Dhabi attracted a record number of guests, around 5 million (4,875,499), which was a growth of 9.8% on the previous year. Abu Dhabi is now targeting an annual increase of 11%. This year, DCT Abu Dhabi achieved record first quarter hotel traffic amounting to a 10.9% rise over the corresponding period of 2017. This growth was driven by a surge of visitors from the UK, Germany, India, China, United States and the GCC region. On the back of this impressive performance, the Department is moving closer to achieving its target of welcoming 8.5 million guests to Abu Dhabi by 2021.

HE Saif Saeed Ghobash, Undersecretary of DCT Abu Dhabi, said: “Abu Dhabi is an inspiring destination and we invite visitors to truly experience its authentic cultural heritage and world-class facilities. The consecutive increases for guest arrivals is clear testament to the Emirate’s growing international appeal. At ATM, we have successfully positioned the capital as a global destination of distinction built on unique experiences and a rich cultural heritage. We thank our key partners and stakeholders in helping us communicate our vision successfully.”

Building on Abu Dhabi’s strategic position as a leading tourism destination, DCT Abu Dhabi continues to form collaborations with diverse entities to provide its residents and visitors with substantial tourism experiences ranging across world-class facilities, cultural diversity and family-leisure entertainment. Earlier this week, the Department signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Al Dana Leather Factory (aLmandoos) as part of its long-term strategy to transform Emirati-owned businesses into exceptional leisure attractions for visitors and tourists, thus creating unique experiences with deep insights into the local culture and heritage.

At this year’s ATM, DCT Abu Dhabi also asserted its position as a leading destination for medical tourism. Supporting the Department of Health’s (DOH) drive to promote Abu Dhabi as a medical tourism destination, DCT Abu Dhabi launched a ‘medical tourism corner’ at the Abu Dhabi Pavilion for the first time. The Pavilion was joined by five leading medical providers including Abu Dhabi Health Services (SEHA), Mubadala, NMC Healthcare, VPS Healthcare and Mediclinic Middle East.

In this regard, Mohamed Al Hameli, Acting Undersecretary of Department of Health Abu Dhabi said: “It is our great honor to be a part of the Arabian Travel Market and to have this opportunity to enhance the Abu Dhabi’s position in healthcare sector on the local and regional map. We are working together with our partners in a team spirit to achieve our ambition of Abu Dhabi as a leading destination for medical tourism, which is a true demonstration and bright evidence of the strong infrastructure, potentials and quality of services of healthcare sector in Abu Dhabi”

An integral part of Abu Dhabi’s participation at the event was also focussed on positioning the emirate as the leading cruise destination in the Middle East.  Owing to the increasing number of cruise passengers, the Emirate has cemented its position at the forefront of the Gulf’s ambitions to become the leading international alternative winter sun cruise destination. In 2017, the capital welcomed a total of 329,105 cruise tourists and in Q1 of 2018, 212,644 cruise passengers visited the Emirate, indicating a promising season ahead in the coming months.

Lastly, the Department also revealed details about its diverse range of year-round events, including the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair, which is currently running until 1st May and the exciting opening of Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi in July.

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