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HKTB Organises annual tourism overview to help the trade capture opportunities

HKTB’s annual trade seminar focuses on revitalizing Hong Kong’s tourism with strategic initiatives and industry collaboration, targeting quality growth and capturing emerging markets, including the significant Muslim travel segment.

The Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) held its annual large-scale trade seminar “Tourism Overview 2024” at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre today (March 21), explaining the latest tourism trends and the Board’s work plan for the year to around 1,200 representatives of local travel agents, attractions, hotels, airlines, retailers, food and beverage enterprises, MICE sector partners and cruise lines, as well as teachers and students from the tourism schools of local tertiary institutions.

The Tourism Overview this year is themed “Drive Success Together, As One”. Dr Pang Yiu- kai, HKTB Chairman, said in his opening remarks, “Last year marked a milestone for Hong Kong as we reconnected with the world and laid a solid foundation for tourism. This year, HKTB will devote our full efforts to converting travellers’ interests into actual visits, to uphold Hong Kong’s role as an international metropolis, strengthen our role as a tourism hub and pursue quality growth. This relies on the active participation and support of the travel trade and tourism-related sectors, joining hands together, creating synergies and maximising the tourism industry’s contribution to the economy.”

Mr Dane Cheng, HKTB Executive Director, reviewed the tourism performances in 2023 and analysed the outlook of the industry for 2024. Mr Cheng also elaborated on HKTB’s work plan and the four key strategic focuses, including staging and supporting world-class events, developing diverse and immersive experiences, stepping up promotions in visitor source markets, enhancing service quality and supporting the trade. The HKTB also invited Mr Steve Saxon, Partner, McKinsey & Company and Mr Fazal Bahardeen, Founder and CEO, Crescent Rating, to discuss consumer trends for business advancement and the potential of Muslim travel respectively. The sharing analysed various data on visitors’ travel patterns and deepened the audience’s understanding of the opportunities of Muslim markets with real case studies to help the travel trade to better grasp the latest tourism market development.

Mr Saxon said, “We continue to see the resurgence of the mainland China travel market, and Hong Kong remains at the top of many travellers’ lists. The travel industry should grasp the trends of the returning mainland traveller, and continue to win this important group.”

Mr Bahardeen said, “One of the significant growth segments within the travel sector is the Muslim travel market. Hong Kong has a unique geographical advantage. It can access over 30% of the world’s Muslim population within a 3- to 6-hour flight time. This advantage, coupled with its diverse tourism offerings, creates a huge opportunity for Hong Kong to tap into a significant portion of the Muslim outbound market. To fully capitalise on this opportunity, it is vital that the city launches targeted marketing campaigns to attract Muslim travelers.

In addition, Mr Kenneth Wong, HKTB General Manager, MICE & Cruise updated the trade on the latest developments of the meetings, incentive travel, conventions and exhibitions sector and the key initiatives on cruise tourism development. Representatives from HKTB’s worldwide offices also touched base with the local trade partners and shared their analyses on the latest situation of each market.

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Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales. She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.