Taipei reveals ’secrets’ as it joins UIA

Taiwan capital’s tourism department joins Union of International Associations and trial runs new itineraries around city to prepare for post-pandemic return of overseas groups

TAIPEI City Government’s tourism department has joined the Union of International Associations as the Taiwan capital prepares for a “post-pandemic restart”.

The move to strengthen the city’s links with international association organisers in the UIA follows Taipei’s Department of Information and Tourism becoming a member of the Hybrid City Alliance in 2021.

Authorised by the United Nations, Brussels-headquartered UIA publishes up-to-date information and research results on associations and conferences around the world while supporting the development of its member organisations through training and networking.

UIA has 42,000 international association members, and collects data on some 74,000 organisations from 300 countries and regions.

A Taipei tourism department spokesman said the city’s fourth-place Asia Pacific ranking in the 2022 American Express Global Meetings and Events Forecast represented renewed hope in its “quest to become Asia’s premier MICE city choice”.

While international travel restrictions remain in place, Taipei has focused on domestic MICE and leisure travel with “secret destination” itineraries showing the potential of new that organisers can use when overseas groups return to Taiwan.
The new secret-destinations itinerary focused on the areas around Yuanshan, Jiantan, and Shilin which are easily accessed by using the Taipei Metro. The itinerary included the Grand Hotel’s Secret East Tunnel and the former residence of Kung Ling-wei, the Grand Hotel’s first general manager, and ended with a visit to the 2022 Taipei Lantern Festival and Shilin Night Market.
Each destination offers a unique, storytelling quality and local character – qualities that so far have not been given wide international exposure but are praised within Taiwan.

“In contrast with the major reopening recently seen in many countries around the world, Taiwan is taking a more cautious approach, opting for a gradual reopening,” a city spokesman said.

“As part of its advance preparations for an influx of MICE travellers once pandemic restrictions have been lifted, [the tourism department] has specially invited leading travel agencies, conference hotels and international gathering PCOs in the inbound incentive-travel market, along with special resilience task forces formed by central government organisations, to come together for public-private sector brainstorming…  focused on jointly overcoming the challenges of the post-pandemic new normal and laying out a strategy for a market restart.”

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