Rapid in­crease in ha­lal tourism

The world’s Mus­lim pop­u­la­tion will grow at 35 per cent over the next decade, bring­ing the Mus­lim pop­u­la­tion from 1.6 bil­lion in 2010 to 2.2 bil­lion by 2030, ac­cord­ing to a study by Pew Re­search Cen­tre. Re­port­edly, the Is­lamic tourism mar­ket is pro­jected t

TravTalk - Middle East - - FRONT PAGE - SHE­HARA RIZLY

Thai­land is named one of the Top 10 Mus­lim-friendly tourism des­ti­na­tions in the world by Global Mus­lim Travel In­dex (GMTI) 2015. The re­cent host­ing of the first-ever Thai­land Mus­lim Friendly Des­ti­na­tion in Bangkok fur­ther strength­ens Thai­land’s po­si­tion to cater to Mus­lim trav­ellers by pro­vid­ing Ara­bic speak­ing staff, ha­lal food op­tions, prayer fa­cil­i­ties in the air­port and Mus­lim-friendly ho­tels, restau­rants and tourist at­trac­tions through­out the country.

Re­cently, the Thai cabi­net ap­proved the Ha­lal De­vel­op­ment and Pro­mo­tion Strat­egy for 2016-2020. The ob­jec­tive is to pro­mote Thai­land as a key man­u­fac­tur­ing and ex­port base for ha­lal prod­ucts and ser­vices, in­crease the country’s rev­enue, build aware­ness and trust in Thai ha­lal prod­ucts. The ac­com­pa­ny­ing Ac­tion Plan is a three-pronged ef­fort in­volv­ing the Thai pub­lic and pri­vate sec­tors and var­i­ous Is­lamic in­sti­tu­tions in Thai­land. Other than that, TAT has de­vel­oped a long term Mus­lim-friendly des­ti­na­tion cam­paign all over their net­works world­wide to fur­ther at­tract Mus­lim vis­i­tors. Chalermsak Su­ranant Di­rec­tor – Dubai and Mid­dle East of­fice Tourism Au­thor­ity of Thai­land

Mus­lim trav­ellers have in­creased from only 25 mil­lion in 2000 to 108 mil­lion in 2014, bring­ing in $145 mil­lion in value. In 2020, the num­ber of Mus­lim trav­ellers would reach 150 mil­lion, bring­ing in more than $200 mil­lion in tourism re­ceipts.

The Philip­pines De­part­ment of Tourism (PDOT) seeks to po­si­tion the Philip­pines as the world’s new­est Mus­lim-friendly des­ti­na­tion by giv­ing out a host of in­cen­tives to tourism and travel es­tab­lish­ments that will seek ha­lal cer­ti­fi­ca­tion and turn their fa­cil­i­ties ‘Mus­lim-friendly,’ Un­der the Philip­pine Ha­lal Tourism Pro­gram, DOT will cover all fees for ha­lal ac­cred­i­ta­tion and as­sist the es­tab­lish­ments ev­ery step of the way if they com­mit to turn their fa­cil­i­ties ‘Mus­lim-friendly’ at least 40 es­tab­lish­ments — 20 in Manila; 10 in Cebu and Bo­ra­cay; and 10 in Davao — the four pi­lot ar­eas iden­ti­fied for the Philip­pine Ha­lal Tourism Pro­gram, have been tar­geted for ha­lal cer­ti­fi­ca­tion by April 7, in time for the gas­tro­nomic event, “Madrid Fu­sion” to be opened in Manila, where PDOT has re­served a sec­tion for the ha­lal show­case. Di­rec­tor Verna C. Buen­suceso Of­fi­cer-in-Charge, Mar­ket De­vel­op­ment Group DOT Philip­pines

As far as Is­lamic Tourism in Malaysia is con­cerned, the country is the best des­ti­na­tion for Mus­lim trav­ellers in the world. Ac­cord­ing to a Thom­son Reuters re­port, Malaysia is recog­nised as the lead­ing country with the most de­vel­oped Is­lamic econ­omy for Mus­lim trav­ellers ahead of big names like the UAE, Saudi Ara­bia, Turkey, Bahrain and Jor­dan.

The Min­istry of Tourism & Cul­ture, Malaysia through Is­lamic Tourism Cen­tre (ITC) will con­tinue to carry out ac­tiv­i­ties, con­duct­ing re­search and or­gan­ise ca­pac­ity build­ing pro­grammes as well as train­ing cour­ses that will help con­trib­ute to the Is­lamic tourism seg­ment of Malaysia. Tourism Malaysia, the mar­ket­ing and pro­mo­tional arm of Min­istry of Tourism and Cul­ture Malaysia, has es­tab­lished 44 of­fices in var­i­ous mar­kets through­out the world to carry out mar­ket­ing and pro­mo­tional ac­tiv­i­ties. Th­ese in­clude of­fices in Dubai, Jed­dah, Iran, Is­tan­bul and Al­maty. Zulk­i­fly Md. Said Di­rec­tor Gen­eral - Is­lamic Tourism Cen­tre Min­istry of Tourism and Cul­ture Malaysia

In 2014, the Mal­dives re­ceived 37,201 tourists from the Mid­dle East re­gion which in­creased by 14.7 per cent in 2015. Saudi Ara­bia re­mains a pri­or­ity bring­ing 12,405 vis­i­tors to the Mal­dives in 2014, other GCC coun­tries are also emerg­ing as po­ten­tial ex­pand­ing mar­kets in­clud­ing the UAE with 7,007 vis­i­tors and Kuwait with 5,248 vis­i­tors. Other Mid­dle East­ern coun­tries such as Le­banon, Oman, Qatar, Jor­dan are ac­count­able to 10,591 vis­i­tors to the Mal­dives.

To at­tract more of Mus­lim trav­ellers, we are work­ing very closely with our ho­tel part­ners to en­sure that the ho­tels have the avail­abil­ity of Ha­lal cui­sine along with Mus­lim-friendly ac­com­mo­da­tions. We are also work­ing closely with our in­dus­try part­ners to cre­ate a cal­en­dar of events that cel­e­brates events such as Ra­madan, Eid-ul-Adha and Eid-ul-Fitr. Ibrahim Asim Di­rec­tor, Mal­dives Mar­ket­ing and PR Cor­po­ra­tion, Mal­dives

In the past years, there has been an in­crease in the num­ber of ha­lal food out­lets all over Ja­pan par­tic­u­larly in Ky­oto. In or­der to cater to Mus­lim guests, Ky­oto City has founded an in­de­pen­dent ha­lal cer­ti­fi­ca­tion sys­tem and pro­vides in­for­ma­tion in four lan­guages about restau­rants and ho­tels that have re­ceived this cer­ti­fi­ca­tion.

We have a lo­cal base in the UAE that cov­ers the en­tire Mid­dle East re­gion, we have in­tro­duced sev­eral cam­paigns and ini­tia­tives that are aimed at proac­tively at­tract­ing more and more tourists from the Mid­dle East to Ky­oto City, for many unique and mem­o­rable ex­pe­ri­ences. Lo­cal sem­i­nars are held reg­u­larly to ed­u­cate the travel in­dus­try on the im­por­tance of pro­vid­ing Ha­lal and Mus­lim-friendly cui­sine and other ser­vices and ameni­ties that would be ap­pre­ci­ated by guests from the re­gion. We have also have a spe­cial on­line Mus­lim-friendly Ky­oto web­site www.ky­oto. travel/mus­lim which is avail­able in English, Ara­bic, Ba­hasa Malaysian and Turk­ish, where vis­i­tors can log on to gain de­tailed in­for­ma­tion on trav­el­ling to Ky­oto city. Shuhei Aka­hoshi Man­ag­ing Di­rec­tor Ky­oto Con­ven­tion & Vis­i­tors Bureau

As a US des­ti­na­tion, Or­ange County, Cal­i­for­nia, through the OCVA, con­tin­ues to re­main at the fore­front of proac­tively reach­ing out to wel­come guests from the Mid­dle East. It is the first, and to date only, U.S. tourism as­so­ci­a­tion to have a per­ma­nent pro­mo­tional of­fice within the GCC.

In 2015 OCVA launched an on­line ed­u­ca­tional video in con­junc­tion with the Sheikh Mo­hammed Cen­tre for Cul­tural Un­der­stand­ing in Dubai, to train Or­ange County’s re­tail, hos­pi­tal­ity, tourism and even po­lice force on how to warmly wel­come and ef­fec­tively in­ter­act with guests from the Mid­dle East. We hope busi­nesses use this as train­ing to en­cour­age cul­tur­allyaware hos­pi­tal­ity. En­sur­ing that we as­sist vis­i­tors by cul­tur­ally pro­vid­ing for their needs will mo­ti­vate Mid­dle East­ern trav­ellers to re­turn to Or­ange County year on year. Ed Fuller Pres­i­dent and CEO Or­ange County Vis­i­tors As­so­ci­a­tion

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.