Oman Ministry to focus on Mice facilities at event
Muscat, March 26, 2012
Oman’s Tourism Ministry expects its growing world-class meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (Mice) facilities to be highlighted as it participates in the upcoming Gulf Incentive, Business Travel & Meetings (GIBTM) exhibition in Abu Dhabi this month.
The event which is set to be held at Adnec, begins today (March 26) will conclude on March 28.
In particular focus at GIBTM will be the Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre project, valued at $1.8 billion, a statement from the Ministry said.
After its completion in 2015, the 2 million sq m facility will include a 3,200 seat auditorium, four hotels with a total of 1,000 rooms, a 192,000-sq m shopping mall, 200 serviced apartments, 85,000 sq m of grade-A office space, and 25,000 sq m of exhibition space.
The centre, Grand Hyatt Muscat and Chedi Muscat Hotel will exhibit alongside the Ministry of Tourism, the statement said.
The Ministry expects the Mice segment to perfectly complement Oman’s growing appeal as a tourism destination for visitors from around the world. In 2011 Oman attracted 1.6 million tourists, while this year the country is targeting to attract around 2 million foreign tourists.
The GCC market was a major contributor to the Sultanate’s tourism last year, with an overall growth of 26 per cent, and the number of visitors from UAE growing 30 per cent. Revenue from tourism last year accounted for 2.6 per cent of Oman's gross domestic product (GDP).
Meanwhile, Muscat was recently selected as the Arab Tourism Capital for 2012 by the Arab Tourism Ministers Council. It was also named the second best city on earth to visit by the influential travel guide publisher Lonely Planet.
“We are keen to capitalise on the potential benefits of a thriving Mice segment to further foster the growth of Oman’s tourism industry. A number of strategic measures are currently being undertaken to build Oman’s Mice sector offerings, including the construction of world-class exhibition and conference venues,” said Haitham Mohammed Ghasani, director of tourism promotion, Oman Ministry of Tourism.
“The added value that Oman offers the Mice segment when compared to other destinations is our unique culture and heritage,” he said. “GIBTM 2012 provides the right platform for us to identify key trends, explore best practices and interact with leading industry players to showcase Oman’s various business travel attractions, and we are confident of a highly fruitful participation this year as well.”
Representatives of the Ministry will participate in the various sessions of the exhibition, while Ministry officials themselves will attend a number of pre-arranged meetings with various Mice travel suppliers and other key industry players, the statement said.
GIBTM 2012 will see the participation of over 2,000 professionals from the conference, events and meetings industry in the Middle East across a range of industries, it said.
It will be attended by a combination of regional and international industry buyers and suppliers, for three days of business opportunities, networking and professional education, the statement said.
GIBTM is the driving force behind the development of the professional Mice industry across the region. – TradeArabia News Service