Abu Dhabi, 15th Dec. 2008 By the year 2012, hotel rooms in Abu Dhabi are expected to rise to 23,000 with the demand and supply stabilizing between 2012 and 2015, HE Mubarak Hamad Al Muheiri, Director General of Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority (ADTA), said after opening yesterday the first edition of the Equip’Hotel Middle East Exhibition and Conference (EHME), a major trade show focussed on the region’s hospitality industry.
EHME is a three-day event that is currently taking place at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre.
The inauguration, which took place under the patronage of HE Sheikh Sultan Bin Tahnoon Al Nahyan, Chairman of ADTA and Abu Dhabi National Exhibitions Company (ADNEC), included a ribbon cutting ceremony and a tour of the exhibition halls.
Around 150 exhibitors from 17 countries are taking part at the inaugural edition of the show. 89 international companies are from the US, Canada, Spain, Italy, Norway, Turkey, Switzerland, Portugal, Lebanon, Egypt, Oman, Syria and Thailand while the remaining 61 are from the UAE. Germany and France have national pavilions at the event.
“EHME comes at the right time and the right place. With 150 companies participating at the first edition of the show, this is very encouraging. We expect EHME to grow in size and importance in the coming years,” said HE Mubarak Hamad Al Muheiri, Director General of ADTA.
Noting the importance of the show at Abu Dhabi’s dynamic environment, Al Muheiri said: “It is important because Abu Dhabi will be witnessing the doubling of hotel rooms with scores of hotels currently under construction. By 2012, the numbers of hotel rooms are expected to rise to 23,000 with the demand and supply stabilizing between 2012 and 2015. The World Tourism Organization said that travel and tourism in the Middle East grew by 11 percent in 2007 compared to 5 percent in other parts of the world. Abu Dhabi is not affected by the financial crisis because the visitors are mostly business travellers rather than leisure.” EHME is organised by Reed Exhibitions Middle East with the support of Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority. The UAE capital’s leading hospitality groups, Abu Dhabi National Hotels (ADNH) and National Corporation for Tourism ‘&’ Hotels (NCTH), are show partners.
The event will showcase the latest products, services and technologies for the hotel, restaurant and catering sectors besides featuring specialist conferences emphasizing trends such as the green hotels and shariah compliant hotels. Showcase seminars highlighting innovative technologies and a Hosted Buyer Program (HBP) are also part of the agenda at EHME.