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ITB Berlin Review

ITB Berlin 2013 sees more growth
March 2013 1241

ITB Berlin 2013 was by far the world’s largest meeting place of international tourism policy decision-makers and business leaders.

The German chancellor Angela Merkel, the Indonesian president Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, representatives of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) and the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), as well as more than 100 ministers of tourism and state secretaries, met last month in Berlin to help shape the future for growth in the tourism industry.

Dr Christian Göke, COO Messe Berlin: “Once again, ITB Berlin has kicked off the travel season around the globe. No other place in the world gathers so many leading representatives from the private and public sector. This is where the tone is set for the future of travel for a billion people. The increase in international buyers is proof that ITB Berlin continues to be the most important marketplace for the global travel industry.“

From March 6 to 10, 2013, 10,086 exhibitors from 188 countries presented their products and services in display halls that were fully booked up. Overall, some 110,000 trade visitors came to Berlin, of whom 43 per cent were from abroad. This year there was a slight increase in buyers from the USA and the Middle East. Exhibitors reported holding quality talks and sealing more business deals.

Tim Clark, president, Emirates: “ITB Berlin has once again shown itself to be the force driving the global travel industry. Our participation here as an exhibitor was an all-round success. Over the years the Emirates stand at the show has become the largest outside our home market in Dubai. This year colleagues from the Emirates group in Europe and Dubai were also here to maintain contact with business partners and customers from our core markets. Our stand in the shape of a huge globe and our logo “Hello Tomorrow” were enthusiastically received by trade visitors, the media and the general public alike.”

The ITB Berlin Convention registered record levels of attendance. A total of 21,000 took part in the 200 lectures, discussions and workshops, 25 pe rcent more than in 2012. Social Media and Mobile Travel Services proved to be major visitor attractions. The matchmaking event for bloggers involving exhibitors met with an extremely positive response.

More than 60,000 members of the general public came to find out about the wide-ranging information on offer from exhibitors and providers of niche market products.

The participation of Indonesia, this year’s partner country, at ITB Berlin 2013 was spectacular and featured more than 300 dancers, musicians and performing artists from Kalimantan, Sumatra, Sulawesi, Papua, Jakarta and Java. Besides showcasing its natural wonders, the world’s largest archipelago shined the spotlight on seven other aspects of the country: culture and traditions, nature and eco-tourism, leisure sports, cruises, gastronomy and shopping, spas, wellness and Mice events. International trade visitors and the general public were able to sample the country’s culinary delights and enjoy its age-old tradition of spas on the stand of Indonesia at the show.

This year around 6,000 accredited journalists from 80 countries and some 250 bloggers reported on events at ITB Berlin. 350 politicians and diplomats from Germany and abroad were present at the show. The president of the Republic of Indonesia and the chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany opened the world’s largest travel trade fair. In addition to 98 foreign delegations, Thailand’s Princess Ubolratana Mahidol also attended the show. 77 ambassadors from all over the world, 47 foreign ministers and numerous foreign state secretaries were also gathered. Federal Minister of Transport, Building and Urban Development Peter Ramsauer, Federal Minister of Economic Cooperation and Development Dirk Niebel, State Minister for Economics, the Infrastructure, Transport and Technology Martin Zeil, as well as Berlin’s Governing Mayor Klaus Wowereit, came to find out what the travel industry had to offer.

The UNWTO Silk Road Ministers’ Summit and the Africa Forum on the KAZA beacon project also attracted the attention of international politicians.

The next edition of ITB Berlin will take place from March 5 -9, 2014.

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