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EVENTS

PATA Travel Mart to be held in Astana, Kazakhstan

The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) will organise PATA Travel Mart 2019 in Astana, Kazakhstan next year.

The event will be hosted by the Ministry of Culture and Sports of the Republic of Kazakhstan and the Kazakh Tourism National Company JSC, the key organization in the tourism industry effectively promoting the tourist brand of Kazakhstan and contributing to attracting investments to the industry.

“We are excited to hold the first-ever PATA event in Central Asia in the Republic of Kazakhstan. As the destination stands at the crossroads between Asia and Europe, it is the perfect venue to organize the Association’s signature travel trade exhibition in a uniquely transformational city that blends various cultures and heritages of both the East and West,” said PATA CEO Dr. Mario Hardy. “We look forward to working with the host in showcasing this truly unique destination.”

Vice Minister of Culture And Sport of The Republic of Kazakhstan, Mr. Yerlan Kozhagapanov, said, “We are honored to be the bid winner and are grateful for the opportunity to host PATA Travel Mart 2019. We are positioning Astana as a MICE hub for Central Asia and looking forward to welcoming PATA members, hosted buyers and visitors at PATA Travel Mart 2019.”

Kazakhstan is the heart of Eurasia. Located simultaneously in two parts of the world – Europe and Asia, it is at the junction of several of the world’s largest civilizations and borders with China, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and the Russian Federation. Due to its key strategic location, it is among the strongest supporters of the Belt and Road Initiative strategy adopted by the Chinese government. According to the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), the country received a total of over 7.7 million total visitors in 2017.

Kazakhstan has a unique geography with a rich and diverse landscape, which includes numerous lakes, lowlands, deserts and valleys framed by mountains in the east and southeast. Due to the large territory and variety of natural conditions, there are over 6,000 species of plants, 172 species of mammals, 500 species of birds, 52 species of reptiles, 12 species of amphibians, and 150 species of fish.

The country’s new capital, Astana, has become a showpiece for 21st-century Kazakhstan, with a fantastical skyline marked by landmark buildings designed by leading international architects in a variety of Asia, Western, Soviet and futuristic styles.

Astana, also known as the ‘Singapore of the steppe’, is a growing city with a young, forward-looking vibe, where Kazakhstan’s ambitious and talented youth are increasingly drawn. This ever-growing city – host to the Expo 2017 world fair – offers a glimpse into a town of tomorrow.

Special discounts are available for sellers located within Central Asia, while early bird discounts are available for those registering before December 31, 2018.

For more information or to register for PATA Travel Mart, please visit www.PATA.org/PTM or email PTM@PATA.org.

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CONVENTION BUREAUS

ICPB to boost the Indian MICE market

India is aiming to be the next MICE destination, and ICPB is creating more avenues to fulfill this dream, Chander Mansharamani, Vice Chairman, ICPB explains how growth has become a visible feature for all developments in the MICE sector.

How is ICPB facilitating India’s vision of progress?

The vision of ICPB is to make India a professional Convention Destination. We have made a lot of initiative in that direction. Our international roadshow in Europe was a success. About 102 MICE players interacted with our members and got to know about various facilities India has to offer. These interactions are making foreign buyers confident of our professional services.

Will you be adding new conventions in the coming future?

The other initiative ICPB has been working on is towards making India participate in overseas MICE-related tradeshows. Besides regular roadshows, the promotional plan is to participate in more number of MICE-related trade shows also have at least two international trade shows every year. We in ICPB are quite confident because of the overwhelming support from the Ministry of Tourism in recognizing ICPB as a nodal agency for making India a preferred convention destination and achieve the vision we have set for ourselves.

What are ICPB’s promotional plans for 2018?

The growth is visible now as India has improved its ranking from 34 to 25 by International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), which is a world body for conference and convention professionals.

How is India growing as a MICE destination in comparison to other countries?

India always has an edge over other countries. We do have the infrastructure to cater to a majority of conferences and meetings as 86.5% of the conference all over the world has less than 1000 delegates. We are also looking at an add-on to various segments like beaches, adventure, heritage and culture, wellness programs, and golf.

What are the latest developments at ICPB?

We have been appointed as a Professional Research Agency by the Ministry of Tourism, and ICPB will be working on the size of the convention industry. This will have an economic and social impact, which will help the states plan better to create a better MICE infrastructure and make India a MICE destination.

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