Events at the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) generated a total economic value of Dh23 billion, with Dh13.1 billion being retained within Dubai's GDP, a new report has shown.
DWTC's latest Economic Impact Assessment report for 2018 also showed that the economic value of the events in 2018 was equivalent to 3.3 per cent of Dubai's Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The study estimated the total corresponding gross output of these activities was a three per cent increase over 2017. For every Dh1 spent by attendees at DWTC for services within the MICE sector, over 4.4 times is estimated as being spent on ancillary sectors in the wider Dubai economy.
Analysing the factors underlying DWTC's growing contribution to the city's GDP acceleration agenda, the report highlighted the success of the venue's 97 large-scale exhibitions, trade events, conventions and conferences hosted through 2018, that attracted over 2.5 million event attendees, with over one million international visitors, reflecting the sustained return on investment (ROI) being delivered consistently for global participants. Insights further illustrated how the organisation has successfully aligned its portfolio strategy, medium and long-term investment, calendar diversification, content enrichment and visitor experience delivery programmes to effectively support the ambitious goals set out in the UAE's Vision 2021.
Helal Saeed Almarri, director general, Dubai World Trade Centre Authority and Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, noted that 2018 was a particularly noteworthy year that marked four decades of accelerated journey towards accomplishing the mandate laid out by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to make Dubai the global hub for regional business networking.
"Our investments and strategic efforts over this period are aimed at furthering DWTC's role as a pioneering MICE platform, optimally positioned to connect developed economies with high-growth emerging markets across continents," he said. "Looking ahead at 2020 and beyond, DWTC seeks to build on this strong business portfolio, as we pursue the vision to incrementally aid the development of a knowledge economy and self-sustaining entrepreneurial ecosystem. Large-scale events held in the city are critical drivers of GDP acceleration and have contributed positively to the economy year-on year."
Overall, Dubai's MICE sector enabled Dh16.3 billion of direct economic output in 2018 - marking a two per cent increase over 2017, driven by the surge in demand for goods and services. The nation's leadership has consistently reiterated the significance of a burgeoning MICE sector, indicating that its success largely supports wider industries. Apart from direct revenue generated, the industry enables repeat visitation, industry progression through knowledge sharing, and inward investment into the economy.
The report also showed that international attendees to DWTC large-scale events constitute 41 per cent of total participants, yet they account for 79 per cent (Dh12.9 billion) of the overall direct spend. Domestic participants accounted for 59 per cent of the total attendance and were responsible for 21 per cent of direct spend, valued at Dh3.4 billion.
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