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Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority Hosts The First ’Belgian Travel Summit’ In The Emirate (30 May 2019)


The event partnership comes in line with Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority’s extensive promotional efforts in key target markets within Benelux countries

Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority (RAKTDA) today inaugurated the first edition of the Belgian Travel Summit (BTS) taking place until the 1st June in the Emirate of Ras Al Khaimah. The four-day summit is the first joint congress of the Belgian trade unions of travel agencies at a national Belgium level and witnessed the attendance of the Association of Flemish Travel Agencies (VVR) and the French speaking Union Professionnelle des Agences de Voyages (UPAV).                               

The summit is hosting a series of plenary sessions led by industry experts and visionaries focused on four key themes: Sustainability, Education. Digitalisation, and Business Development. Key speakers include Haitham Mattar, Chief Executive Officer of Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority; Murielle Machiels, Academic Director at Solvay Brussels School; Thierry Geerts, Country Director of Google Belgium and Luxembourg; and Pieter Van Leugenhagen, co-founder of a successful Belgian start-up and International Business Development Lead at Yondr.

As part of his keynote speech, Haitham Mattar delved into how stainable tourism growth has been a part of Ras Al Khaimah’s destination strategy since 2016 with the vision to be a sustainable and competitive tourism destination and leading contributor to the Emirate’s economy – all in line with UNWTO 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Haitham Mattar, CEO of Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority said: “We are delighted to host and welcome the first edition of the Belgian Travel Summit as we get to showcase Ras Al Khaimah’s mesmerising coastline, scenic mountains, terracotta deserts, historic forts, and some of the most diverse and enchanting landscapes in the region to key members of the Belgian travel trade industry. Our incredible experiences such as Jebel Jais Flight: The World’s Longest Zipline have already helped put Ras Al Khaimah on the world map, but we need to continue to showcase the diversity of our destination through our partners in top source markets. As we look towards our goal of 1.5 million visitors by 2021 and 3 million by 2025, it is essential to personally connect with travel professionals from our source markets to further develop our partnerships with generalist and specialised tour operators and to give travel advisors at travel agencies a real flavour of everything Ras Al Khaimah has to offer our visitors.”

As part of the summit, the delegation is being introduced to Ras Al Khaimah’s diverse and spectacular sport, adventure, cultural and leisure offerings including Jebel Jais Flight: The World’s Longest Zipline, golf, falcon shows, archery, cultural tours, desert safari, and Ghaf tree planting.



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