In Brief

Zabeel Park

Dnata appointed GSA for Iraqi Airways
Dnata Agencies has been appointed general sales agent GSA for Iraqi Airways in Dubai, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah, Ajman and Umm Al Quwain.

Iraqi Airways has recently launched thrice-weekly services from Dubai to Baghdad, resuming operations after a break of 15 years.
On the Baghdad-Dubai route, the airline will operate a Boeing 737-200 in a two-class configuration with a total of 107 seats. Flight IA124 departs Baghdad on Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 1030 hrs arriving in Dubai at 1300 hrs. Return flight, IA123, departs Dubai at 1400 hrs arriving in Baghdad at 1630 hrs.
As GSA, Dnata will represent Iraqi Airways in the UAE providing sales and marketing support and managing .the airline’s ticket stock.

New destination management firm for Oman
A new destination management company has been set up in Oman to promote the Sultanate’s MICE business. Ejabyah Management, set up by Michael Crawley, aims to be Oman’s most innovative destination management company, corporate meeting planner and team dynamics event creator. Oman, with its pristine waters, glorious mountain ranges, fascinating caves, historical forts, bustling souks and year-round sunshine, is a top regional destination for incentive groups, said Crawley. “Incentive travel is a modern management tool, which rewards and recognises success as well as seeks to motivate and inspire individuals and groups of people to improve levels of performance,” he added. Ejabyah Management also provides corporate meeting planning and team building concept and event creation.

Zabeel Park will boost tourism
Zabeel Park, the first technology-based theme park in the Gulf, is expected to boost domestic and international tourism in Dubai, said Mattar Al Tayer, deputy director general of Dubai Municipality, while making an inspecting tour of the Dh200 million project’s worksite. Work on the project has already been completed and the park will play host to one of the largest festive occasions of the emirate on its opening day later this year. The park, located between Dubai Trade Centre and Al Karama, is spread across an area of 51 hectares and comprises a number of provisions including food courts, a cricket pitch, amphitheatre, exhibition centres and special facilities for boating inside the lake. The park has been divided the park into three zones of 281,000 sq m, 162,000 sq m and 22,000 sq m to distinguish one zone from the other by providing plenty of attractions. All these zones are connected by a road train which transports visitors from one zone to the other.

Travco building two resorts in Al Aqah
Travco Dubai, a leading tour operator, is investing Dh161.73 million ($44.034 million) in two resorts in Fujairah’s Al Aqah beach. The company has also applied for a plot of land on the Palm Jumeirah to develop a third hotel. Osama Bushra, Travco’s regional general manager, said: “The first resort will be operated by Spanish chain Iberotel. It will have 314 rooms and will be completed by October 2006. Construction of the project is currently going on in full swing.” Investment in the project will be about Dh74.9 million, and the second hotel with 364 rooms will cost Dh86.83 million. Travco is part of German tour operators TUI Group, the world’s largest tour operator. TUI Group is an investment partner in all the projects. The Fujairah government is providing the land to Travco for the hotels. “The second hotel will be ready for business just after the delivery of the first and will complement the growth of the UAE’s tourism industry,” Bushra said. “We are waiting for Nakheel to provide us the land, when we will make an estimate of the investment outlay. However, we are looking at a resort hotel at the Palm.”

Saudi tourism industry set to grow
Saudi Arabian cities, including Abha, will need 129,000 hotel rooms and 74,000 furnished apartments in order to accommodate the growing number of tourists coming from within and outside the Kingdom, according to a study conducted by the Supreme Commission for Tourism. The Kingdom’s tourism industry is expected to create some 105 million direct and indirect jobs by 2020, the study said, adding that it would help solve the unemployment problem faced by young Saudis, said a report. The study pointed out tourism would solve many problems being faced by the country including unemployment, low living standard of individuals, migration to major cities and pressure on public utility services, adding that it will also boost the country’s diversification drive. It expects the Kingdom’s tourism revenue to reach SR101 billion ($27 billion) by 2020. Tourist flights would increase to 1,411 million including 128 million domestic flights with a total spending of SR783 billion, said the report.