Amadeus launched (13-Nov-2010) a report which finds the Middle East is on the brink of becoming the world’s dominant travel hub. The report, Securing the Prize for the Middle East, sets out what the region should focus on to fulfill its potential as a dominant global hub. Amadeus believes factors enabling the Middle East to underpin the next wave of globalisation include the region’s geographic position at the centre of the major air routes; its continued economic growth compared with the G8 countries; and the major investments planned in the travel industry, including USD86 billion for airports.
- Airport expansion: Investment in the travel, hospitality and aviation sectors will enable the Middle East to diversify its economy with plans to expand international, intra-region and domestic tourism. However, it warned airport expansion plans could lead to over capacity.
- Growth: The number of tourists travelling to the Middle East is projected to double to 136 million by 2020 compared with 54 million in 2008. Religious tourism is likely to be a major new factor in this growth.
- Technology: Amadeus also highlights the potential of innovation and new technology to underpin future growth.
- Transparency: The survey warns against complacency and exposes the risks posed by a lack of coordinated pan-regional policies in regulation, investment and business operation. Amadeus issues recommendations focused on the need for integration and transparency. [more]
Amadeus: “The Middle East already connects more major global destinations via a single flight than any other hub. This has been the result of aspiration, dedication and innovation from business and political leaders. This approach to strategic planning, ambitious investment and early technology adoption continues and the region is now poised to take an even greater competitive leap forward enabling it to lead the next wave of globalisation. The aim of becoming the world’s dominant travel hub by 2025 is within reach, but obstacles remain, the chief one being complacency,” Antoine Medawar, Vice President, Middle East and North Africa. Source: Amadeus, 13-Dec-2010.