ibtm arabia marks a fruitful decade

ibtm arabia 2016 is this year celebrating its 10 year anniversary as the leading international exclusive event for the Arabian meetings, incentives, conferences and events industry. 

Following its opening as the Gulf Incentive, Business Travel & Meetings Exhibition (GIBTM) in 2006, ibtm arabia and its host city, Abu Dhabi, have undergone major growth.

Exhibition manager, ibtm arabia, Shinu Pillai said: “Over the past decade ibtm arabia has transformed into one of the Gulf region’s most exclusive and high-profile shows, providing a unique opportunity for top-level buyers to meet leading industry suppliers from the middle east and around the globe.”

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He further noted that when the exhibition first launched in 2007 the regional MICE industry outside of Dubai was in its infancy. “ibtm arabia was the first such event to help establish and build the industry in the Gulf region, and throughout the last decade it has served as a catalyst for expanding and developing the Arabian MICE industry.”

Director, Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau, Mubarak Al Shamisi said: “Having recently undergone a significant enhancement in its tourism infrastructure, Abu Dhabi is now better placed than ever to meet organisers’ highest expectations. With headline attractions, stunning new resorts, a re-energised commitment to service and delivery excellence, the destination has entered a new era of maturity.”

According to a report from Alpen Capital international association, meetings in the Middle East have more than tripled over the past 10 years. Supporting this, the last Amadeus report illustrates that the GCC meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (MICE) industry is seeing continuous growth and that the Middle East is set to expand even further while attracting high-profile global events and state-of-the-art infrastructural investments.

MICE visitors to Dubai currently equate to 0.9 million, a figure which is estimated to double to between 1.7 and 1.9 million by 2020. Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi) suggested that the MICE sector is currently generating $1.4 billion per annum for Abu Dhabi and is expected to reach $2.4 billion by 2020.

This year ibtm arabia will take place at Jumeirah at Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi from February 9 to 11 February.