Arabian Travel Market 2018 to focus on responsible tourism

Oct 12 2017

'Responsible Tourism' has been announced as the official theme for the Arabian Travel Market, ATM, 2018 show, which will take place at the Dubai World Trade Centre from 22 to 25April, 2018.

Simon Press, Senior Exhibition Director, ATM, said, "The GCC is one of the fastest growing regional hospitality markets on a global scale and is a resource-intensive industry. Its impact on the environment is multi-dimensional, ranging from CO2 emissions, water and energy demand and food waste to noise and light pollution.

"Travellers have become conscious of the carbon footprint they are leaving while visiting destinations, and the subsequent impact on the environment. This growing trend has forced the entire industry to look long and hard at how sustainability and a credible social conscious must drive business strategy."

"At ATM 2018, we will be showcasing some of MENA’s (Middle East and North Africa’s) leading and commercially successful businesses, which make the rich heritage of the region accessible to tourists, bring economic development to the local communities and help preserve their cultures," Press remarked.

More than 1.2 billion international tourists crossed the globe in 2016, which is expected to grow to 1.8 billion by 2030. Tourism generates 10 percent of the world’s gross domestic product and is responsible for one in every 10 jobs and 30 percent of the world trade in services. However, the UN’s World Tourism Organisation has estimated that tourism is responsible for about five percent of the global CO2 emissions. Accommodation accounts for approximately 20 percent of the emissions from tourism, which includes energy demand, dining and leisure. It is important that hoteliers, operators, local communities and tourists take responsibility to ensure tourism becomes more sustainable. The Middle East has taken the lead when it comes to responsible tourism, with a focus on sustainability in the hospitality industry across the GCC," Press noted.