Int'l Tourism Fair in Spain

Added On January 30, 2015

The 35th FITUR trade fair for international tourism opened on Thursday in Madrid.
This annual event brings the world tourism industry together so that they can look to the future of the industry.
Paul Giblin is the CNC correspondent.
"2014 saw 1.1 billion people take foreign holidays and that number is set to increase in 2015 in a business worth 1.4 trillion dollars.
Where will we go? What will we do? How will we get there? The answers to some of those questions could wIll be found in the 2015 FITUR exhibition being held in Madrid."
Over 9,000 companies from 165 countries and regions attend the trade fair. The exhibition area covers over 55,000 square meters.
It expects around 200,000 visitors, three fifths of whom will be trade participants, while the rest will be from the general public.
Exhibitors show what they will offer to tourists and grasp the opportunity for networking with potential clients and generating sales.
Compared with 2014, the 2015 FITUR trade fair sees a 12-percent increase in number of participants. There are more exhibitors from Asia Pacific and the Middle East.
As the industry is becoming increasingly diversified, this year's event also initiates new activities focusing on different sectors of international tourism, including Health Tourism, Gastronomic Tourism, Eco Tourism, etc. There are also forums, panel discussions and debates.
In retrospect, 2014 was a bumper year for international tourism. Over 1.1 billion people made international visits, and the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) predicted a further growth of 3 to 4 percent in 2015.
Part of that growth is due to the ever increasing numbers of Chinese tourists travelling abroad. In 2014, around 120 million Chinese spend their holidays abroad and the figure shall not decrease in the near future.
Mr. Rifai stresses that tourism is much more important than people might think. One in 11 people on the planet now works in this industry and it accounts for 9 percent of the World's GDP. It is a motor for international development and understanding.