The Arabian Travel Market (ATM), which is the industry’s leading travel and tourism exhibition within the Middle Eastern and Pan Arab Regions, was held at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Center in UAE, from 22 to 25 April. This was the 25th edition of the ATM.
Over 60 companies representing the travel and tourism industry of Sri Lanka successfully participated in the event, under Sri Lanka’s country pavilion at the ATM 2018, promoting Sri Lanka as a key tourist destination. Sri Lanka participated in this event for the 15th consecutive time.
The Sri Lanka Pavilion at the ATM 2018 was inaugurated on 22 April by Minister of Tourism Development and Christian Affairs of Sri Lanka John Amaratunga, with ceremonial cutting of the ribbon. This was followed by lighting of the traditional oil lamp amidst the beating of Sri Lankan drums. The Consul General of Sri Lanka to Dubai and the Northern Emirates, Charitha Yattogoda and a large number of business leaders in the tourism industry representing both UAE and Sri Lanka also participated in this event. The traditional Sri Lankan dancing performances were staged at Sri Lanka’s country pavilion attracting a large number of visitors.
A well attended press conference was held on 23 April parallel to the travel fair to keep UAE and other international media informed about the latest developments in relation to Sri Lanka’s tourism industry and the current tourism prospects available in the country from the perspective of the potential UAE and other Middle Eastern travellers.
The ATM brings about 40,000 industry professionals under a single roof, making an avenue for generating over $ 2.5 billion worth of business over four days. In this year, more than 2,600 exhibitors, representing over 150 countries participated at the event, providing Sri Lanka with the opportunity of promoting itself as a destination with authenticity, compactness and diversity.
Prior to the ATM, two tourism promotional road shows were held on 17 and 19 April in Sharjah and Dubai respectively, with the objective of providing opportunity for the visiting Sri Lankan travel and tourism related companies to meet their counterparts based in Dubai and Sharjah to hold one-to-one business meetings with a view of establishing successful business links. Upon successful conclusion of those one-to-one business meetings, a tourism promotion seminar was held in each place.
Attending both events, Consul General Charitha Yattogoda delivered the welcome speeches highlighting the importance of Sri Lanka being one of the key out-bound tourism destinations in the region from the perspective of UAE travellers. The Director Marketing of the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, made detailed presentations, supported by attractive pictures and videos about Sri Lankan tourism in order to make UAE based travel and tourism related companies aware about the latest developments in the tourism industry and the tourism prospects available in the country. A large number of Dubai and Sharjah-based travel and tourism related companies attended the two events.
The Consulate General of Sri Lanka in Dubai and Northern Emirates coordinated Sri Lanka’s participation at the ATM 2018 as well as Road Shows in collaboration with Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau.