Silk Road Seminar at JATA Tourism Expo 2014: The Growth of Cultural Tourism on the Silk Road and Opportunities for the Japanese outbound market
2014 marks the 20th anniversary of the historic Samarkand Declaration on Silk Road Tourism, and since its adoption, tourism and travel has changed significantly. Cultural tourism is growing at an unprecedented rate and now represents around 40% of global tourism. The Silk Road is more accessible than ever before, with improved transportation links, open skies policies and liberalised visa policies working to facilitate travel. The rise of the internet, social media and smartphone technology has created vast opportunities for marketing and promotion.
At JATA Tourism Expo Japan 2014, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Japan Association of Travel Agents (JATA) and Asia-Pacific Tourism Exchange Center (APTEC)organized a special seminar focused on the diversity of the Silk Road’s cultural tourism offer and the opportunities this creates for attracting the Japanese outbound market. To address the growing interest in authentic cultural experiences, presenters shared examples of Silk Road product that appeals to the Japanese, including cultural accommodation.
This Seminar brought together National Tourism Administrations, Destination Management Organizations, tour operators, and media experts from the Silk Road. Presentations looked at how stakeholders can work more effectively together to optimize growth for the Japanese market.
Ms. Holly Morris, author, investigative reporter, filmmaker and tv host delivered the keynote speech at the Silk Road Seminar. Ms Morris travelled the Silk Road in 2012 as the host on Globe Trekker, the world’s most watched travel tv show. For more information and to see footage from the Silk Road episodes, please click here
The programme included (click for presentations):
Official Welcome by Mr. Taleb Rifai, UNWTO Secretary-General and Ms. Yumi Yamaguchi, Vice Commissioner of Japan Tourism Agency (JTA)
UNWTO Silk Road Presentation by Ms. Johanna Devine, Technical Coordinator, UNWTO Silk Road Programme
Keynote Presentation by Ms. Holly Morris, Director, Producer, Writer and Television Presenter
- Understanding the Opportunity: the Caucasus Experience by Mr. Saba Kiknadze, CEO and Founding Partner of Georgian Hospitality Group,
- The Value of Cultural Accommodation on the Silk Road: Preservation, Promotion and Product by Mr. Peter Wong, Executive Chairman, China Chamber of Tourism and Chairman, Culture Resources Development Co Ltd.,
- Maximising the Potential of Japan’s Outbound Market for Tourism Growth (presentation in Japanese)/ 日本のアウトバウンド市場の潜在性を最大化するために～シルクロード観光の成長に向けて by Mr. Koji Nishimura, General Manager of Asia, Middle and Near East Club, Tourism International Inc.
- Developing Cultural Tourism Experiences in Central Asia for the Japanese Market (presentation in Japanese) 日本市場向け中央アジアの文化観光開発 by Mr. Komilov Sardor, Director of Japanese Department, Megatour Ltd.
Discussion and Debate moderated by Mr. Peter Jordan, Founder, Gen C Traveller
About JATA Tourism Expo:
JATA Tourism EXPO Japan is Japan’s major travel trade show with over 150 countries and regions represented, attracting over 150, 000 visitors annually.
JATA Tourism Expo hosted a number of conferences and seminars at its 2014 edition, for more information please click here.
For more information on the UNWTO Regional Support Office for Asia and the Pacific click here
For more information on Japan Association of Travel Agents JATA click here
Read the blog on the event 'Discovering the Silk Road from where it started' by moderator Mr. Peter Jordan click here
Seminar organized by: