AZAD-HYE (30 October 2004): In a recent interview with Armenpress (13 July 2004) Arthur Zakarian, Head of the Department of Tourism in the Armenian Ministry of Trade and Economic Development declared that the geography of the foreign tourists visiting Armenia is expanding and visitors from EU countries are set, for the first time, to exceed those coming form ex-Soviet Republics. According to him, this is an indication that Armenia is becoming an attractive tourist destination for new markets. "Armenia's tourists industry has the potential of becoming one of the largest sectors in the national economy," he added.
In a press release dated 26th October 2004, the Armenian Tourism Development Agency ATDA, announced that it will be presenting Armenia in London's World Travel Market (8-11 November 2005), the most famous tourism and travel fair worldwide. During this fourth consecutive attendance, Armenia will be introduced as a "four season new destination".
Although international travel exhibitions such as London's World Travel Market (WTM), Berlin's Tourism Exhibition (ITB) and Moscow's International Travel & Tourism Exhibition (MITT) are all important venues to meet potential buyers of the Armenian tourism product, it is time to open up to some regional tourism exhibitions, especially to the Arabian Travel Market in Dubai, the Middle East's premier travel and tourism exhibition, whose 12th edition will be held at the Dubai World Trade Centre from May 3-6, 2005. To date, exhibitors from 16 countries have reserved space for the show. Four weeks since the official launch of its sales campaign this month 42 % of space for Arabian Travel Market 2005 has been reserved.
Arabian Travel Market 2005 has received huge pavilion allocations from Dubai projects ("The Palm", "Dubailand", etc), Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority and countries such as Australia, Singapore, India, Thailand and Turkey, etc. One of the officers stated: 'We are optimistic about another record-breaking show next year, particularly in view of the fact that 93% of all exhibitors completed rebooking forms onsite at the 2004 event'.
Arabian Travel Market 2005 is held under the auspices of the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, Government of Dubai. Armenia can benefit a lot by attracting both UAE locals and expatriates (foreign workers residing in the country). Hundreds of thousands affluent citizens and residents of this country travel to the Far Asia, Australia, Europe and many other places in the world for their vacations, especially due to the fact that the summer weather in the UAE is very harsh, therefore it forces the population out to resorts and tourism destinations in countries with mild climatic conditions.
Many countries and companies are benefiting from the tourism cake of the UAE and the rest of the Gulf countries, why should not a neighboring, beautiful, affordable and open-minded Armenia reap portion of the well deserved income.