The Edition


Maldives to adopt data based tourism promotion policy

Fathmath Shaahunaz
28 September 2016, MVT 15:20
Universal Group's chairman Mohamed Umar Manik (L) and local tycoon Champa Hussain Afeef attend the Destination Marketing and Promotion Conference. PHOTO: NISHAN ALI/MIHAARU
Fathmath Shaahunaz
28 September 2016, MVT 15:20

Top officials of the Maldives’ tourism industry gathered Wednesday for the first discussion to overhaul the state’s current tourism promotion policy to one that is more data based.

Tourism promotion bodies and resort executives are participating in this “Destination Marketing and Promotion Conference” being held on the occasion of World Tourism Day which was celebrated Tuesday. The largest conference yet to be held in the industry, the discussions will focus on tourism promotion strategies based on research and statistics.

A number of international trade experts are also in attendance at the conference to give presentations on data based tourism promotion strategies. The veterans include Thomas Stoeckle of LexisNexis, a prominent data analysis company of the United States, Matt Clarke and Rinta Mukkam of FlightGlobal, a renowned aviation insight website, and Simon Press of Reed Travel Exhibitions, a firm that provides information on the travel industry to trade professionals.

Several pioneers of the Maldives’ tourism industry are also attending the conference, including Mohamed Umar Manik, chairman of Universal Group, and local tycoon Champa Hussain Afeef.

In his opening speech, tourism minister Moosa Zameer declared that the current policies on tourism promotion require major changes in order to maintain the Maldives’ status as a top travel destination. He added that the counselling committee consisting of tourism pioneers had also raised that issue as the most pressing matter.

Hence, tourism promotion activities in the Maldives will be based on data and statistics beginning next year, stated the minister.

“We need a new line of thinking. We need to make changes. It can be done.”

Currently, the Maldives’ tourism is promoted mainly via travel fairs and roadshows held abroad and television advertisements. However, the state has not yet conducted sufficient data and research based promotional activities.

The Maldives also commenced a forum on developing the tourism industry on Tuesday. Top government officials and executives of the tourism sector had participated in the “High Level Tourism Industry Forum” to discuss and exchange ideas on policies to further develop and advance the tourism industry.