New UNWTO & ATM Forum to support highly successful UNWTO & WTM Ministers’ Summit

PR No.: PR 11088


The highly-successful UNWTO & World Travel Market (WTM) Ministers’ Summit is to have a sister event in 2012 – the UNWTO and Arabian Travel Market (ATM) Forum which will take place during the Arabian Travel Market in Dubai (30 April – 3 May 2012).

The UNWTO & WTM Ministers’ Summit at World Travel Market 2011, the leading global event for the travel sector, is the fifth consecutive edition of this unique event for the world’s tourism ministers to discuss the state of the sector and agree on common strategies to address on-going challenges.

It is now a firm fixture on the tourism ministers’ calendar, with up to 200 ministers and senior aides attending the 2011 UNWTO & WTM Ministers’ Summit discussing issues such as the impact of fiscal consolidation on tourism in Europe or the future of travel in the Middle East and North Africa.

The UNWTO & ATM Forum at the Arabian Travel Market on Monday 30 April 2012, will play a similar role in bringing together the leaders of the region for the increasingly important Middle Eastern travel and tourism sector.

Reed Travel Exhibitions’ Group Exhibition Director, Mark Walsh, said:  “The growth in tourism arrivals since the turn of the century means a forum of this kind is essential for both tourism ministers and the private sector to discuss future possibilities. As the premier travel trade exhibition for the region, ATM is the only place to host such an event.”

The Middle East has been one of the fastest growing tourism regions this last decade. International tourist arrivals grew from 24 million in 2000 to more than 60 million in 2010, generating as much as US $50 billion in export earnings for the destinations in the region.

UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai, said: “In spite of current challenges, prospects in the Middle East continue to be very positive in the long-term, as shown by the new UNWTO forecast Tourism Towards 2030 as well as by the projects of infrastructure, airline expansion and hotel capacity in the pipeline for the region.”

The conclusions from the UNWTO & ATM event on The Future of Tourism in the Middle East and North Africa, taking place at WTM on Wednesday 9 November will set the agenda for the first UNWTO & ATM Forum next May.

High-profile speakers at the event at WTM include:


Mr. Mounir Fakhry Abdel-Nour, Minister of Tourism of Egypt

Mr. Ahmed A. Al-Nuaimi, Chairman, Qatar Tourism Authority

Mr. Mehdi Houas, Minister of Tourism of Tunisia

Mr. Guy Crawford, Chief Executive Officer, Jumeirah Group Dubai

Mr. Vijay Poonoosamy, Vice President, International & Public Affairs, Etihad Airways

Mr. Tony Hopkins, UK Customer Director, Thomas Cook

Mr. Ghassan Aridi, Chief Executive Officer, Alpha Tours Dubai

Mr. Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General, UNWTO

RTE representatives will be Simon Press, Exhibition Director World Travel Market, Lucie James, Marketing Manager Arabian Travel Market and Nadège Noblet, Regional Account Manager Middle East, North Africa & Hotel Companies Arabian Travel Market




World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)

Poeta Joan Maragall, 42 - 28020 Madrid - SPAIN

Tel: +34 91-567-8100

Fax: +34 91-567-8218



Reed Travel Exhibitions



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