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Monday, December 24, 2007

Study: Hotel, leisure investments in Middle East total US$3.6 trillion

TOURIST DRAW: The study covers 13 Middle Eastern countries and is to be published at the Hotel Show 2008, which will take place at the Dubai International Exhibition Centre from 8-10 next year.
- AFP picture

A massive US$3.63 trillion (US$1 = RM3.35) is being invested in hotels, leisure projects, aviation developments, cruise lines, tourism promotion and supporting infrastructure, across the Middle East, according to preliminary results of a research programme.

The study covers 13 Middle Eastern countries for the period to 2020 and is to be published at the Hotel Show 2008, the Middle East's leading supplies exhibition catering to the region's hospitality sector, which will take place at the Dubai International Exhibition Centre from June 8-10 next year.

According to a statement, the Middle East Industry Outlook 2020 is an update of a ground-breaking research study by Fast Future and Global Futures and Foresight on the Future of Travel and Tourism in the Middle East and is sponsored by the Hotel Show, Siraj Capital, Nakheel and Silverjet.

The study's strategic partners are the Pacific Asia Travel Association and IMEX Frankfurt.

"This study takes a future perspective on key trends and drivers shaping the region's travel and tourism sector to 2020 and beyond and is an invaluable tool to all in the hospitality industry," said Maggie Moore, exhibition director of the Hotel Show 2008.

The show is organised by DMG World Media, one of the leading exhibition companies in the region.

The research identifies plans to invest at least US$580 billion in over 900 hotels across the region from Syria to Oman and found projected construction costs for the most recent announcements from over 72 developers, investors and operators vary from US$10,000 to US$5.71 million per room.

The 19 largest airlines in the region are expected to spend at least US$143 billion adding 876 planes to their fleets with the largest buyers in terms of aircraft purchased and total investment expected to be Emirates - buying 245 aircraft at US$60 billion - and Qatar Airways purchasing 150 planes for US$52 billion.

The two largest spenders were Dubai World Central (Al Maktoum International) at US$8.2 billion and Saudi Arabia's King Abdulaziz International at Jeddah, which is investing US$8 billion.

The research programme will culminate with a major report to be published in June 2008 in time for release at "The Hotel Show".

The report highlights six critical factors that could cause turbulence and confusion and have an adverse economic impact in the coming years namely, the global economic outlook, environmental challenges, human resources, safety and security, infrastructure and information availability and reliability.

By Bernama

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