DWTCA Virtually Convenes Industry Leaders to Plan Resurgence of MICE Sector in Dubai Post Pandemic

Business Events | June 17, 2020 | Press Release

Dubai World Trade Centre Authority (DWTCA)

As Dubai’s economy re-opens amidst the backdrop of COVID-19, the Dubai World Trade Centre Authority (DWTCA) kick-started efforts for an accelerated restart of the city’s Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions (MICE) sector, as one of the key contributors to Dubai’s tourism and events economy. In a virtual stakeholder forum that convened some of the world’s leading event organizers, DWTCA focused the agenda on preparing a roadmap for the industry to navigate past the immediacy of the COVID-19 pandemic and its ensuing economic turmoil, to resuming event activities and host a full-fledged and content-rich business events calendar for Dubai ahead of global peers.

A key priority of this discussion centered on readiness measures to guarantee, first and foremost, the health and wellbeing of all visitors, instilling a much-needed sense of confidence in the city’s ability to host them without compromising their personal safety. To this end, DWTCA emphasized upcoming deployment of new regulatory standards and encouraged collaborative efforts to ensure effective adoption of the highest international safety and hygiene protocols, as well as preventative and precautionary measures with stringent deployment across all upcoming events and exhibitions, aligned with the guidelines issued by the Government of Dubai.

All members of the meeting commended efforts in working closely with prominent global associations such as UFI - The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, the International Association of Convention Centres (AIPC), and the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), in formulating health and safety protocols specifically for the events and exhibitions industry and ensuring the successful resumption of operations. They had also expressed extreme confidence in the future of events, and that Dubai will be placed on a global map as a leader in organizing successful events amidst the pandemic.

Industry leaders acknowledged the significance of the MICE sector for Dubai’s GDP, and discussed strategic initiatives for a prudent, yet accelerated resumption to normalcy for the region’s most prolific calendar of global mega-business and consumer events and conferences. The meeting highlighted the pivotal role of DWTC as a platform for instilling business confidence across sector participants, catalyzing international business growth and accelerating regional value creation for exhibitors, delegates, buyers and visitors, particularly at the present time when businesses are actively seeking support to ramp up operations and regain market share as world travel begins to recommence.

Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai World Trade Centre Authority and Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, said, “Under the directives of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, and the announcement from His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council, to reopen business activities, we are gearing up to resume events and exhibitions at DWTC shortly in this second half of the year. The MICE sector is a key pillar of our economy and we are working aggressively towards restarting and accelerating the return to normalcy of business events - a critical goalpost. Yet, the safety of our visitors and assuring a well-rounded experience for every domestic and international participant supersedes all other priorities. As such, DWTC is committed to the development and deployment of international best-in-class for each and every event hosted at our Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre (DICEC) venue as it pertains to health and safety protocols, which our teams are diligently working on designing in adherence with most stringent guidelines as issued by the Government of Dubai so that we can assure all visitors of the highest precautionary and preventative safeguards being instilled without hindering their on-site event experience.

“The world economy is expected to continue to adapt to the unprecedented challenge of COVID-19 in the foreseeable future, and every industry will undeniably go through an evolution to readjust to the changing realities, including the events and exhibitions sector. We see this as a tremendous opportunity and DWTC, backed by the continued commitment of our long-standing industry partners is ideally poised to not only surmount these near-term disruptions but also pioneer new models of value creation for the global MICE sector. I am extremely heartened by the shared endorsement of this future-oriented premise by my colleagues across Dubai’s MICE sector at our forum, and their collective confidence in Dubai’s and DWTC’s ability to enable a strong resurgence of the industry, so that together we emerge stronger - delivering sustainable ROI for the industry, and enhanced GDP for the economy.”

The meeting was chaired by Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, DWTCA and Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), with attendance from Abdul Salam Al Madani, Chairman, INDEX Holding; Geoff Dickinson, CEO, DMG Events; Peter Hall, President, Europe-Middle East-Africa (EMEA) Informa; Dawood Al Shezawi, Chairman of Strategic Marketing; David Beguely, Managing Director, Middle East Terrapinn; Simon Mellor, Managing Director, Middle East Messe Frankfurt; Vasyl Zhygalo, Managing Director Middle East Reed Exhibitions; Trixie LohMirmand, EVP, Events Management, Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC); and Mahir Julfar, EVP Venue Management, DWTC.


DWTCA addressed key regional MICE sector leaders to prepare for an accelerated restart of the city’s Business Events industry as a core GDP catalyst for Dubai’s economy.

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