The Gulf Incentive, Business Travel and Meetings Exhibition (GIBTM) 2014, which takes place in Abu Dhabi on March 24 to 26, is set to incorporate a dedicated Asia pavilion and a networking event to cater to increasing demand for outbound business from Middle East into Asia. The new show programme is intended to facilitate business opportunities between exhibitors and hosted buyers through face-to-face meetings and market-focused forums.
Enhanced focus on Asia reflects increased Middle East interest in placing outbound business there. This has been confirmed by IBTM Middle East Meetings Industry Report 2013, which states: “The forecast for the year is even more positive as can be seen from the 69 per cent of locally based buyers predicting more events for the next 12 months. In addition, 59 per cent of Middle East buyers are forecasting increased budgets for the next twelve months and 30 per cent say budgets will remain the same as last year”.
GIBTM exhibition manager, Lois Hall said: “The Middle East is rich with opportunities for outbound business and last year, GIBTM saw 251 hosted buyers attend with 67 per cent placing orders in excess of US$650,000 each.
“For 2014, we are set to increase our offering to 300 targeted buyers as demand continues to grow for quality interaction with leading industry suppliers, and the new GIBTM event programme will build on previous show floor successes to allow us to continue to push outbound business from the region.”