The two-day programme will bring a series of innovative and thought-provoking discussions and exchanges.
Spearheading discussions about global tourism economy in the context of China's far-reaching Belt and Road Initiative, the Global Tourism Economy Forum (“GTEF” or “the Forum”) will hold its seventh edition in Macao on 23 and 24 October. Under the theme “Strategic Partnership in a New Era, Rising Momentum for a Shared Future”, GTEF 2018 takes a holistic approach in this edition to examine the impact of strategic tourism collaboration between the European Union (EU) and China in the 2018 EU-China Tourism Year (“ECTY 2018”), and the enormous latent opportunities in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area waiting to be explored.
A pre-event press conference was held at MGM Cotai on October 8th. It was attended by Chief of Office of the Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture of the Macao Special Administrative Region Government, Ip Peng Kin; Director of Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) and Vice Chairman of GTEF, Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes. Vice Chairman and Secretary-General of GTEF, Pansy Ho, presented the program of GTEF 2018.
In his welcome remarks, Ip Peng Kin stated, “The Macao Special Administrative Region Government has been promoting and implementing the strategies and recommendations of the Macao Tourism Industry Development Master Plan. Macao actively participates in the tourism development along the national Belt and Road Initiative, gives full play to its own functions and advantages, enhances regional collaboration and integration, promotes the development of multi-destination tourism products, and joins hands in building the Greater Bay Area into a quality tourist destination. By cultivating new growth drivers in tourism economy, Macao strives to extend visitors’ length of stay and attract more high-end travelers. In addition, held for seven years in a row, the Forum has established itself as an international tourism brand of Macao, bridging and enhancing the friendship among fellow participants and representatives, fostering wider tourism cooperation between China and the rest of the world, and creating potential for new growths.”
Expressing her gratitude to the entire Macao community for its continuous support to GTEF, Pansy Ho emphasized that innovative and strategic tourism cooperation is the key to capture the immense possibilities derived from the Country’s Belt and Road Initiative and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area development. Introducing EU as the Partner Region and Guangdong Province, where the Bay Area is located, as the Featured Partner Province, she remarked, “China is the second largest overseas tourist source market for the EU. A China-EU tourism cooperation is a powerful alliance that can create unlimited opportunities.” She added, “The imminent launch of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area Development Plan, and the successive completion of various regional infrastructure such as the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge, mark the beginning of a new chapter in the development of regional integration.”
As an Official Partner of ECTY 2018, GTEF celebrates the special tourism year in its 2018 edition by featuring the EU as he Partner Region, and Guangdong Province as the Featured Partner Province. Under the topic “Strategic Partnership – Building Bridges of Cooperation for Shared Benefits”, ministers and global private-sector CEOs will discuss how the framework of ECTY 2018 has served as a precursor of deepened China-EU cooperation in tourism and an enhancer of extensive and sustainable economic growth on both sides. Signing ceremonies for a series of cooperative agreements will be held on the day of the Forum opening.
The two-day programme will bring a series of innovative and thought-provoking discussions and exchanges. GTEF 2018 will present a new edition of the signature Face to Face, Ministers and Private Sector CEOs session, in collaboration with the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO). An array of distinctive panels will also be presented in GTEF 2018, projecting a comprehensive picture of the present and future tourism landscapes for delegates. Day 1 will feature “Festivals – Bridging Traditions and Tourism” and “Gastronomy, Creativity, Tourism” sessions. Highlights of Day 2 are “Greater Bay Area Session Part I –Private Sector Perspective”, “Greater Bay Area Session Part II – Macao Perspective” and “Technology –The Virtual Bridge” sessions, along with three concurrent sessions and workshops such as China Outbound Tourism, Trade and Business Presentation and PET Conference, among other sessions.
Further, the fifth UNWTO/GTERC Asia Tourism Trends will be launched during the Forum. A joint effort of the World Tourism Organization and the Global Tourism Economy Research Centre (GTERC), the report will present tourism trends and outlook of the region, analyze Chinese Outbound Tourism to Europe and European Union Outbound Tourism to China, and examine the development potential of the Greater Bay Area, a new growth area of Asia. Last but not least, networking, investment and cooperation opportunities including business matching, destination presentations and exhibitions will be available for delegates’ benefits.
GTEF 2018 is honored to have ACFIC, PATA, WTCF, UNESCO, The Macau Chinese Enterprise Association, China Daily, UBS and Ivy Alliance Tourism Consulting as supporting partners and sponsors of Forum sessions, among others.