Global strategic futures think tank Global Futures & Foresight (GFF) will present a pathfinding ‘Vision to 2020’ report at this year’s ATM.
The study is an incisive 13-year blueprint for the sector, and covers 13 countries spanning the Gulf Co-operation Council, wider Middle East and Levant, as well as North Africa. It is sponsored by ATM organiser Reed Travel Exhibitions (RTE).
“Across the region, countries, states and cities are embarking on an unparalleled programme of investment and development to increase capacity, improve infrastructures, and grow tourist numbers and revenues. Current estimates suggest that over the next 20 years, upwards of $3 trillion is going directly into leisure and tourism and indirectly into the supporting infrastructure. Through projects announced to date, by 2020 the region will add airport capacity for 300 million extra passengers, build over 200 new hotels, add 100,000 additional rooms, grow visitor numbers to over 150 million and increased the size of its aircraft fleet by over 150 per cent by 2025,” said David Smith, joint head of GFF.
In all, GFF will produce three major industry reports with the ‘pathfinder’ being presented at ATM. The study is being conducted using a combination of a global survey of industry professionals and travellers, in-depth desk research and expert interviews.
“The pathfinder research – the first of its kind in the region - is designed to help industry players develop their understanding of the critical challenges and opportunities the industry is likely to face in the future, define the drivers of change, identify potential events which could blow growth off-course, and illustrate what the overall picture could look like by 2020,” said Smith.
“This major study programme will explore the potential implications of such explosive growth and development. It is aimed at identifying the drivers and barriers which could sustain, accelerate or curtail the forecasted boom in travel and tourism in the region. The study will identify key global, regional and local security, political, economic, social, technological, environmental and legislative trends and consumer behaviours and potential ‘wild cards’ and discontinuous changes. It will then develop scenarios highlighting their possible impact on the region’s plans.”
The study will look at crucial issues of information reliability, innovation, competition and co-operation, sustainability, protection of culture and heritage, differentiation and target markets, service standards, safety, the impact of technology and resources.
GFF’s second report will include comprehensive industry data and will be released in November 2007. The final study – A Response from the Region – containing detailed findings from regional industry leaders will be presented at ATM 2008.