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Thu 13 Feb 2020 02:15 PM

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Dubai's Arabian Travel Market to go ahead in April despite virus threat

Reed Travel Exhibitions says it is monitoring World Health Organisation updates amid deadly coronavirus spread

Dubai's Arabian Travel Market to go ahead in April despite virus threat

According to research from Colliers International, published ahead of this year’s event, but prior to the outbreak of the coronavirus in Wuhan city and Hubei Province, Chinese visitors to the GCC are expected to generate an estimated $3.48 billion in travel and tourism revenue by 2023.

Organisers of the annual Arabian Travel Market (ATM) in Dubai insist there are no plans at the moment to curtail or cancel this year’s event, in light of the deadly coronavirus.

The outbreak, which has claimed the lives of 1,355 people and infected almost 60,000 people worldwide, has wreaked havoc with global events, with the World Mobile Congress in Spain cancelled and the Formula One Grand Prix in Shanghai postponed.

Both the Hong Kong and Singapore legs of the World Sevens Series have also been put back from April to October.

ATM is scheduled to run from Sunday, April 19 to Wednesday, April 22, at Dubai World Trade Centre.

A statement from Reed Travel Exhibitions, organisers of ATM, said: “Arabian Travel Market and Arabian Travel Week 2020 will run as scheduled and thus far we have witnessed no cancellations.”

The statement added that the very latest guidance from the World Health Organisation (WHO) is being followed.

“We are also working with authorities and our venues to put contingency plans in place as the situation develops,” it said.

In 2019, ATM saw a 106 percent increase in visitors from China to the event, which attracts over 39,000 travel professionals, government ministers and international press, each year.

According to research from Colliers International, published ahead of this year’s event, but prior to the outbreak of the coronavirus in Wuhan city and Hubei Province, Chinese visitors to the GCC are expected to generate an estimated $3.48 billion in travel and tourism revenue by 2023, an increase of 71 percent compared with figures from 2018.

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