COM­ING OUT ON TOP

Hospitality Resource Directory - - FOREWORD -

Strong Sin­ga­pore dol­lar cou­pled with a weak­en­ing global econ­omy were among the key mat­ters that were pre­dicted to ham­per the coun­try’s tourism sec­tor in 2016. It was said that as our dol­lar re­mains strong against re­gional cur­ren­cies, tourists may be dis­cour­aged to in­crease their spend­ing while they’re here, if not de­ter­ring them from com­ing at all. The fore­cast seemed to ring true, with a glut of ho­tel rooms send­ing key rev­enue mea­sures (by the ho­tel in­dus­try) to a six-year low. De­spite a 10.3 per cent rise in visi­tor ar­rivals in the first eight months of 2016 (com­pared to the same pe­riod last year), statis­tics from the Sin­ga­pore Tourism Board (STB) showed a de­cline of 2.9 per cent in stan­dard av­er­age ho­tel room rates, and a fall of 2.7 per cent in rev­enues per avail­able room.

A Zika out­break later in the year only served to ag­gra­vate the mat­ter.

How­ever, it was not all doom and gloom for ev­ery­one in the busi­ness of hos­pi­tal­ity in Sin­ga­pore. A ris­ing num­ber of ar­rivals by Chi­nese vis­i­tors was ob­served, thanks to our casi­nos and China’s boom in out­bound tourism, and the trend is ex­pected to grow steadily in the com­ing years. The lo­cal Food and Bev­er­age (F&B) scene has also helped re­cover Sin­ga­pore’s over­all eco­nomic growth, con­tribut­ing a bulk to the na­tion’s GDP.

While ex­perts are still not overly en­thu­si­as­tic for what 2017 holds for Sin­ga­pore’s tourism sec­tor, citing global eco­nomic and po­lit­i­cal un­cer­tain­ties and com­pe­ti­tion from re­gional neigh­bours as pos­si­ble causes, HRD reck­ons that busi­nesses in the in­dus­try should not be too de­spon­dent. As sounded by Min­is­ter for Trade and In­dus­try S Iswaran when an­nounc­ing the Ho­tel In­dus­try Trans­for­ma­tion Map in Novem­ber last year, the ho­tel in­dus­try needs to trans­form to meet cus­tomer ex­pec­ta­tions that are be­com­ing more so­phis­ti­cated, oth­er­wise “achiev­ing the same growth as in the past will be in­creas­ingly dif­fi­cult”.

Which is why we bring you the 12th edi­tion of Hos­pi­tal­ity Re­source Direc­tory — we be­lieve that arm­ing your busi­ness with the right lineup of sup­pli­ers, dis­trib­u­tor and ser­vices is cru­cial for de­vel­op­ment and sus­tain­abil­ity. Cu­rat­ing the broad­est se­lec­tion of re­sources is still at the fore­front with you, and we hope that you en­joy and reap the ben­e­fits of this is­sue.

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