As a growing regional business hub, Abu Dhabi is the capital city and political centre of the UAE, and has an ambitious blueprint for developing its business events industry.
Sustainable development of the tourism sector is a priority, identified as an engine of Abu Dhabi’s future economic growth in the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030, a comprehensive plan for the diversification of the emirate’s economy, and Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority(TCA Abu Dhabi) is responsible for delivering this function. Business Tourism has been identified as a key economic diversification driver in Abu Dhabi.
The Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau, a division of TCA Abu Dhabi drives and supports the development and promotion of business events throughout the emirate efficiently, effectively, and transparently, and in partnership with all its stakeholders, aligned with the Abu Dhabi Government’s 2030 Economic Vision to deliver social and global empowerment and strategic and economic impact.
Strengthening the business event sector by targeting the main sectors of the economy, ranging from carbons to renewables and health to infrastructure, the impact of holding successful events in Abu Dhabi extends beyond straightforward financial considerations.
Advantage Abu Dhabi, a Convention Bureau incentive programme aimed at developing innovative and viable business events aligned to this Economic Vision, is the tool to deliver.
The scheme is aimed at catalysing and seeding innovative and viable business events, and the assistance provided by the ground breaking Advantage Abu Dhabi programme is expected to keep visitors coming in their droves.
Advantage Abu Dhabi programme The initiative, aimed at the corporate meetings and incentive travel segments offers 13 structured packages designed to enhance the emirate’s appeal amongst sector-specific bookers. International conference and exhibition organisers, together with business event organisers with a viable proposal can also apply to the initiative for start-up financial grants, governmental endorsement, leadership patronage, cost rebates and marketing support among others.
This includes start-up financial grants for business event organisers, along with government endorsement, leadership patronage, cost rebates and marketing support. Major conferences also benefit from more practical outcomes on a local and international level, such as enhanced communications before, during and after an event through the Authority’s network of 11 overseas offices, publishing of reports, or holding post-event meetings.
The programme’s strategic outcome delivers a diversified and expanded events calendar supporting different business sectors in Abu Dhabi and across the UAE as a whole. The key is to ensure the event does not take place in isolation from its larger potential strategic economic role.
Again, Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau plays a pivotal role in this, assisting with any planners’ needs under a ‘One Destination’ collaborative stakeholder approach.
It coordinates through a range of governmental and strategic partner Industry Development Committees to act as a one-stop shop, offering free advice, help with planning, and local knowledge, as well as ensuring congress and convention delegates are well versed with the range of experiences available to them pre-, during or post- visit. The net result, by working together with leaders from each of those sectors, is better integration between the government and private enterprise, and a spirit of collaboration between all entities involved in the sector.
With a continually evolving and expanding tourism infrastructure, Abu Dhabi is better placed than ever to meet the highest expectations of the world’s business visitor. Abu Dhabi has won for three consecutive years the World Travel Awards ‘Middle East’s leading Meetings and Conference Destination’ honour – and while the Advantage Abu Dhabi programme has been instrumental, it is Abu Dhabi’s bigger picture which tells the full story.
The Advantage Abu Dhabi incentive programme which acts as a catalyst to support and stimulate the sector for attracting business events to Abu Dhabi, and extending the direct and indirect economic benefit to Abu Dhabi entities across the entire tourism portfolio
Moreover, the coordinated joined up approach bringing Government, Government Related Entity, public and private sectors together under a ‘one Abu Dhabi’ for bid developments is making it easier for event planners, exhibition organisers and professional conference organisers to consider Abu Dhabi as their host for their next big event.
Beyond the coordinated programme of support, key decision-making factors are accessibility, safety, affordability, support, local strong association members and an interesting destination – and we believe Abu Dhabi qualifies on all points.