Investment in the tourism industry in the UAE stands at more than Dh878 billion, according to a report released ahead of a forthcoming conference on the sector. Dubai leads the field with Dh454bn in projects – including the vast Dubailand project – and is followed by Abu Dhabi with Dh305bn, according to the report.
The survey was conducted in preparation for the Tourism Development Projects and Investment Market (TDIM 08), to be held at Dubai International Exhibition and Convention Centre from January 20 to 22.
Researchers said the GCC had committed Dh1 trillion to tourism-related projects, with the UAE accounting for 87 per cent of the market. Oman is the second largest draw with Dh61bn, followed by Qatar (Dh31bn), Bahrain (Dh20.7bn), Saudi Arabia (Dh16.4bn) and Kuwait (Dh12.6bn). The figures exclude infrastructure costs such as power plants and transport networks to support the developments.
“The tourism sector is now one of the most important focus areas for ongoing development in the UAE and elsewhere in the region. We have envisioned TDIM as a platform for tourism players to meet, discuss, explore and enter into new partnerships,” said Ara Fernezian, show manager for TDIM.
“The show has been designed to facilitate investment flows, knowledge-sharing and networking for all key stakeholders in the tourism market.”
Major stakeholders in the region’s tourism and property market are expected to attend the conference, organised by Reed Exhibitions Middle East. Representative from the UAE will include staff from Al Ain Wildlife Park and Resort, Sorouh, Aldar, Tamouh and Al Qudra Real Estate.
Frederic Launay, board member of Al Ain Wildlife Park and Resort, said: “TDIM 08 will be an excellent venue for the launch, marketing and promotion of projects where business-to-business meetings can be held with developers and resort, hotel, entertainment and tour operators.”
Masood Al Awar, executive director of Sales and Marketing, Sorouh Real Estate, said the exhibition would help the country’s tourism and hospitality industry. “We are keen to support initiatives such as TDIM, which will be a good platform for investors and provide a boost for the tourism sector,” said Al Awar.
More than 458 million square metres have been allocated for tourism projects in Dubai and 63 million square metres in Abu Dhabi.
According the Reed survey, the UAE tops the GCC in terms of land area occupied by tourism projects.
The country has a total area of 558 million square metres currently under development, accounting for more than 75 per cent of the combined land area under development for tourism in the GCC.