Tuesday, 9 September 2014 01:51
Marianne David reporting from Malé
The three-day Hotel Asia 2014 exhibition kicked off in Malé yesterday with over 130 stalls and the participation of 35 Sri Lankan companies.
Addressing the inauguration, the Chief Guest Republic of Maldives Vice President Mohamed Jameel Ahmed said Hotel Asia has established itself as the leading F&B trade show in the Maldives and across the region.
The Vice President added that, judging by the number of companies participating, Hotel Asia was the country’s most eminent hotel fair with 1,000 buyers attending the trade fair this year.
“I hope this event will expand in the coming years and I convey my heartfelt best wishes. High profile events such as this spark tourism growth in the Maldives,” the VP continued, asserting that the environment and tourism go hand-in-hand and eco-friendly companies were welcome in the Maldives.
The 2014 event is the largest edition of the exhibition and participating Sri Lankan firms include Cargills, Dankotuwa Porcelain, Dilmah, Serendib Flour Mills, Nidro Supplies, Kelani Cables and Unilever Food Supplies.
The show is on from 8 to 10 September, while the Hotel Asia International Culinary Challenge, featuring almost 500 chefs, is on from 7 to 10 September. The event is being judged by the World Association of Chefs Societies.
“Hotel Asia 2014 is a success story for Lanka Exhibition and Conference Services (LECS) and Sri Lankan exporters,” LECS CEO Aasim Mukthar told the Daily FT. LECS is the parent company of Maldives Exhibition and Conference Services, organiser of the exhibition.
Mukthar added that the exhibition was launched 10 years ago despite many obstacles and the benefits were now being reaped.
Meanwhile, Republic of Maldives Minister of Economic Development Mohamed Saeed said: “The 10th edition of Hotel Asia is, without question, an outstanding achievement, which has grown from humble beginnings, and acts as an enabler to newcomers in the tourism industry. It creates a link between suppliers and businesses at the forefront of tourism.”
This year’s event is supported and endorsed by the Ministry of Tourism of Maldives along with the Sri Lanka-Maldives Bilateral Business Council and National Chamber of Exporters Sri Lanka.
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