ATM 2024 to explore full spectrum

Arabian Travel Market 2023 marked 30 years of the region’s premier B2B travel event

Arabian Travel Market (ATM) is once again poised to be the epicentre of innovation, trends, and discussions, where travel and tourism professionals converge to explore opportunities spanning the full spectrum of the industry – including leisure, business, luxury, and meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions (MICE).

The importance of the event is underscored by the incredible rebound the tourism market has seen following the challenges of the last four years, with the global travel and tourism industry projected to exceed revenues of over $854 billion this year, according to research from Statista. It’s a figure that demands our attention, especially with the sector’s anticipated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.42 per cent between 2023-2027, a trajectory that promises to breach the trillion-dollar mark within the next four years.

While leisure continues to be at the forefront of the Middle East’s travel community, it’s crucial to recognise that it is only one part of the bigger picture. The global business travel market, valued at $689.7 billion in 2021 by Allied Market Research, is projected to soar to $2.1 trillion by 2031. Luxury travel is not far behind, poised to cross the $440 billion mark by the end of this decade, as indicated by research from Coherent Market Insights.

Another sector which plays a pivotal role in GCC countries, especially in the UAE, is Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions (MICE). The Dubai World Trade Centre’s (DWTC) Economic Impact Assessment (EIA) Annual Report for 2022 revealed an impressive total economic output exceeding $3.5 billion generated through 63 large-scale events.

The theme for ATM next year is “Transforming Travel Through Entrepreneurship,” which resonates with my belief that the travel and tourism industry is not just about visiting new places; it’s about creating, innovating, and driving economic growth. As an advocate for the entrepreneurial spirit in travel and tourism, we will shine a spotlight on how leisure, business, luxury, and MICE are collectively driving economic growth and sustainable development across destinations, hospitality, and aviation. The sector offers many opportunities for entrepreneurs and investors, and events like ATM 2024 provide a platform to showcase innovations, exchange ideas, and form partnerships.

In the realm of business and entrepreneurship, GCC countries have emerged as vibrant hubs. They are known for their business-friendly policies, tax-free salaries, and progressive visa reforms, making them some of the top destinations for expatriates looking to settle. Saudi Arabia’s leadership in venture capital investment and the UAE’s record in the number of exits, whereby a business owner sells all or part of their company, as reported in a Q1 2023 Magnitt report, underscore the region’s entrepreneurial vigour.

Sustainability is another facet at the heart of the industry’s evolution. ATM 2024 promises to build on the net-zero commitments outlined during its 30th edition last year. Dubai’s Department for Economy and Tourism (DET), as ATM’s Destination Partner, will showcase initiatives like Dubai Sustainable Tourism, Dubai Can, and Dubai Carbon Calculator. These, coupled with Dubai’s hosting of COP28, set the stage for conversations on responsible tourism, offering a blueprint for a more sustainable future in the UAE and the broader Middle East.

As the region continues to evolve, ATM 2024 stands as the ideal platform for industry experts, thought leaders and entrepreneurs to explore the abundant opportunities within the Middle East’s travel and tourism space but also on a global stage, where industry professionals from around the world can meet and do business.  

– Exhibition Director, Arabian Travel Market