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Middle East and Africa region expected to return to pre-pandemic levels of business travel spend by 2024

Middle East and Africa region expected to return to pre-pandemic levels of business travel spend by 2024

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Arabian Travel Market 2022, Dubai –

GBTA sessions to focus on the future of business travel at ATM 2023

Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 8 March 2023: Business travel in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) is recovering more rapidly than in any other region, according to the most recent Business Travel Index™ Outlook annual forecast and outlook (2022),

from the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA), the world’s largest business travel association. MEA business travel achieved 86% of its 2019 levels during 2022, outperforming the recovery in Americas, Asia Pacific and Europe.

Arabian Travel Market 2022, Dubai –

The strong performance of the sector and future opportunities will come under the spotlight during Arabian Travel Market (ATM) 2023, which takes place at Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) from 1-4 May.

Danielle Curtis, Exhibition Director ME, Arabian Travel Market, said: “The business travel sector is a key component of the Middle East’s wider travel and tourism industry, and it is encouraging to see that it has bounced back so strongly since the pandemic.

Arabian Travel Market 2022, Dubai –

The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) will present an in-depth analysis of how technology can support this return to travel and the ways in which this can be done sustainably in two education sessions with key insights from leading industry professionals.”

According to the forecast, business travel spending reached $933 billion globally in 2022, 65% of the USD $1.4 trillion business pre-pandemic travel spend, with the MEA region accounting for $23 billion or approximately 2.5% of overall spending within the sector.

“The MEA region is an important growth market for business travel and benefitted from a prompt Covid-19 vaccination roll-out in key markets such as the UAE and Israel, as well as increased economic activity driven by the rising price of crude oil to accelerate the business travel recovery.

The region is expected to return to pre-pandemic business travel spend by 2024 and continue its growth trajectory” said Catherine Logan, Regional Vice President EMEA & APAC, GBTA

GBTA will be hosting two sessions at ATM 2023. The first entitled, ‘All Hail the Innovators’ will be taking place on the Global Stage, discussing how transformational technologies can be harnessed and incorporated into corporate travel program effectively.

High-profile speakers include, James Britchford, Vice President Commercial IMEA, IHG, Jordan Bray, Vice President of Plug and Play, and Mohammed Halawi, Global Travel and Journey Risk Management Director, Firmenich FZ LLC.

The second session entitled ‘Implementing Sustainability in your Travel Program’ will be taking place in the brand-new Sustainability Hub and will feature GBTA’s Catherine Logan, Regional Vice President – EMEA & APAC. Logan will provide insights on how corporate travel programs can become more sustainable.

Aside from restricted travel, an increase in remote working globally has had a dampening effect on business travel growth. However, now that travel is almost restriction-free, employees have revealed an increased likelihood to travel more for work, whether long-term or overnight business trips according to the latest business travel outlook poll from GBTA.

Curtis commented: “After the turbulent period we have experienced over the last two years, it will be very interesting to assess current market conditions and find out how business travel can continue to grow, particularly with the recent relaxation of travel restrictions in China.”

ATM 2023 will explore the future of sustainable travel in line with its theme of ‘Working Towards Net Zero’. Having officially initiated its journey to net zero, the conference programme will explore how innovative sustainable travel trends are likely to evolve, allowing

delegates to identify growth strategies within key vertical sectors while providing a platform for regional experts to explore a sustainable future ahead of COP28, which will take place in November 2023 at Expo City Dubai.

The conference will also feature a sustainability category at its annual exhibitor awards for the first time. Exhibiting organisations will be recognised based on the extent to which they have considered the environmental impact of their stands, as well as their efforts to reduce their carbon footprint.

ATM 2023 is held in conjunction with Dubai World Trade Centre and its strategic partners include Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism (DET) as the Destination Partner, Emirates as the

Official Airline Partner, IHG Hotels & Resorts as the Official Hotel Partner and Al Rais Travel as the Official DMC Partner.
The latest ATM news stories are available at hub.wtm.com/category/press/atm-press-releases/.

To register for ATM 2023,  log on to: wtm.com/atm/en-gb/enquire.html

For more information log on to wtm.com/atm/en-gb.html

About Arabian Travel Market (ATM), now on its 30th year, is the leading, international travel and tourism event in the Middle East for inbound and outbound tourism professionals.

ATM 2022 attracted over 24,000 visitors and hosted over 31,000 participants including 1,600 exhibitors and attendees from 151 countries, across 10 halls at Dubai World Trade Centre.

Arabian Travel Market is part of Arabian Travel Week. #ATMDubai
Next in-person event: Monday 1 to Thursday 4 May 2023, Dubai World Trade Centre, Dubai wtm.com/atm/en-gb.html

About Arabian Travel Week is a festival of events taking place within and alongside Arabian Travel Market 2023. Providing a renewed focus for the Middle East’s travel and tourism sector, it includes ILTM

Arabia, ARIVAL Dubai, Influencers’ events and activations, ITIC, GBTA Business Travel Forums, as well as ATM Travel Tech. It also features the ATM Buyer Forums, ATM Speed Networking Events as well as a series of country forums. wtm.com/arabian-travel-week/en-gb.html

About RX (Reed Exhibitions)
RX is in the business of building businesses for individuals, communities and organisations. We elevate the power of face-to-face events by combining data and digital products to help customers learn about markets, source products and complete

transactions at over 400 events in 22 countries across 43 industry sectors. RX is passionate about making a positive impact on society and is fully committed to creating an inclusive work environment for all our people.

RX is part of RELX, a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers. www.rxglobal.com

RELX About RELX
RELX is a global provider of information-based analytics and decision tools for professional and business customers. The Group serves customers in more than 180 countries and has offices in about 40 countries. It employs over 33,000 people, of whom almost half are in North America.

The shares of RELX PLC, the parent company, are traded on the London, Amsterdam and New York Stock Exchanges using the following ticker symbols: London: REL; Amsterdam: REN; New York: RELX.

The market capitalisation is approximately £33bn, €39bn, $47bn.*
*Note: Current market capitalisation can be found at http://www.relx.com/investors

About GBTA BTI™ Outlook
The report provides a detailed analysis of business travel in 2022 with projections for 2023 and beyond, including post-COVID-19 recovery forecasts.

Now in its 14th edition, the GBTA BTI Outlook is an exhaustive annual study of business travel spending and growth covering 73 countries across 44 industries.
About the Global Business Travel Association

The Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) is the world’s premier business travel and meetings trade organization headquartered in the Washington, D.C. area with operations on six continents. GBTA’s members manage more than $345 billion of global business travel and meetings expenditures annually.

GBTA delivers world-class education, events, research, advocacy, and media to a growing global network of more than 28,000 travel professionals and 125,000 active contacts. Visit  www.gbta.org for more information.

World Travel Market (WTM) Portfolio comprises leading travel events, online portals and virtual platforms across four continents. The events are:

WTM London, the leading global event for the travel industry, is the must-attend three-day exhibition for the worldwide travel and tourism industry. The show facilitates business connections for the global (leisure) travel community. Senior travel industry professionals, government ministers and international media visit ExCeL London every November, generating travel industry contracts. Next live event: Monday 6 to 8 November 2023 at ExCel London http://london.wtm.com/

WTM Latin America takes place annually in the city of São Paulo and attracts around 20,000 tourism professionals during the three-day event. The event offers qualified content together with networking and business opportunities.

In this its ninth edition – there have been eight face-to-face events along with a 100% virtual one, which was held in 2021 – WTM Latin America continued to focus on effective business generation

and achieved the advance booking of six thousand meetings that were held between buyers, travel agents and exhibitors in 2022. Next event: Tuesday 4 to Thursday 6 April 2023 – Expo Center Norte, SP, Brazil http://latinamerica.wtm.com/

WTM Africa launched in 2014 in Cape Town, South Africa.  In 2022, WTM Africa facilitated more than 7 thousand unique pre-scheduled appointments, an increase of more than 7% compared to 2019 and welcomed more than 6 thousand visitors (unaudited), the same number as in 2019.

Next event: Monday 3 to Wednesday 5 April 2023 – Cape Town International Convention Centre, Cape Town http://africa.wtm.com/

About ATW Connect: Africa Travel Week’s digital arm, is a virtual hub packed to the seams with interesting content, industry news and insights, and the opportunity to hear from experts on a variety of topics in our new monthly webinar series.

All with the aim to keep all of us in the travel and tourism industry connected. ATW Connect focuses on inbound and outbound markets for general leisure tourism, luxury travel, LGBTQ+ travel and the MICE/business travel sector as well as travel technology.

Africa Travel Week

WTM Global Hub, is the new WTM Portfolio online portal created to connect and support travel industry professionals around the world.

The resource hub offers the latest guidance and knowledge to help exhibitors, buyers and others in the travel industry face the challenges of the global coronavirus pandemic.

WTM Portfolio is tapping into its global network of experts to create content for the hub. hub.wtm.com