PATA defines new events and advocacy agenda

Thursday, 20 October 2011 00:42 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is making a new commitment to help its members engage emerging markets, make better use of technology, bounce back from crises, and fight taxes and regulations that hurt the travel industry.

The new agenda builds on the association’s general new commitment to “build the business” for members. The new direction was defined in PATA’s “Our Future Strategic Focus” published in April 2011.

PATA members then added specific details in a membership survey conducted in August and at an interactive strategy session during the PATA Board meeting in New Delhi on September 10.

PATA Chairman Hiran Cooray said: “Incoming PATA CEO Martin Craigs has been in close consultation with Interim CEO Bill Calderwood on our bold new agenda. Martin is passionate about taking it forward when he starts on October 31.”

PATA will now create a new series of strategically linked events called PATA World City Forums.

The events will primarily be about emerging markets, travel technology, crisis recovery and addressing obstacles to growth such as travel taxes.

Both Craigs and Calderwood will conduct media interviews at the World Travel Market in London on the EU’s proposed Emissions Trading System and the UK’s existing Air Passenger Duty tax.

Both are detrimental to air travel between Europe and Asia Pacific.

Next month, PATA will publish a special report on taxation in the travel industry in its acclaimed, in-depth publication, Issues & Trends.

PATA is also creating a Technology Committee. Its members will have specialist knowledge in niche areas such as mobile, social media, applications, SEO and distribution.

The Committee will put technology on PATA’s events agenda. It will also distil the latest technology trends and make practical recommendations to PATA members on a regular basis.

Within the next few weeks PATA will formally announce its PATA Rapid Recovery Task Force.

The Task Force is creating a manual called Bounce Back that will help destinations better prepare for crisis and recover faster.

PATA is working with the World Travel & Tourism Council to deliver a special session on crisis recovery. The event will be held in Sendai, Japan in April 2012.

 “PATA in 2011 is relevant and being proactive on behalf of its members,” said Calderwood.

“There is a lot of work to be done. But our strategic agenda is clear. Our members have spoken. Now it’s up to PATA to deliver,” he said.