Middle East travel and tourism sector expected to generate $246 billion in 2022

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The Middle East’s travel and tourism sector is expected to generate $246 billion in revenues this year, organizers of the Arabian Travel Market in Dubai said in a statement on Tuesday.

The total contribution of the travel and tourism industry to the GDP of Middle Eastern countries is expected to reach around $486.1 billion by 2028, with governments across the region attracting hefty investments into the industry.

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Bahrain in 2020 attracted $492 million of tourism capital investment while Saudi Arabia earmarked $1 trillion to its travel and tourism sector through 2030.

As tourism destinations in the Middle East continue to widen their appeal and extend offerings to attract more foreign direct investment, global ministers of tourism convened at the Middle East Tourism Investment Summit on the Arabian Travel Market Global Stage on Monday to shed light on access to project finance post-COVID and to discuss investment opportunities and challenges associated with destination tourism in the Middle East.

Hosted jointly by ATM and the International Tourism & Investment Conference (ITIC), the summit began with a Ministerial Roundtable which included the participation of United Arab Emirates Minister of State for entrepreneurship and SMEs and Chairman of Emirates Tourism Council Dr. Ahmed Belhoul al-Falasi, and Jordanian Minister of Tourism and Antiquities Nayef al-Fayez.

“For the UAE hospitality accommodation sector, investment in rooms and keys remains a primary focus as evidenced by a 5 percent growth in the number of rooms compared to 2019 levels, with a variation of service levels and accommodation type,” said al-Falasi in a roundtable discussion at the Dubai-based event.

“… big-ticket FDI will continue to grow in terms of rooms, from the service side, we see a lot of venture capital deployed on technological solutions for tourism. As the customer demand for elevated tourism experiences continues to evolve, we see technology as an important investment area in the future,” he continued.

Running for four days this year, ATM 2022 will conclude on Thursday.

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