Conventions Malta attends Imex America for the first time
Conventions Malta, the MICE sector Directorate of the Malta Tourism Authority participated with a Malta stand at the Imex America fair, which was recently held in Las Vegas.
Attendance at specialised international fairs such as this one is a vital part of the MTA’s strategy to entice business to Malta. The Authority continuously strives to continue its diversification strategy and attract visitors from outside Europe. In fact, the MTA’s chief Marketing officer, Carlo Micallef, commented that tourism in Malta is slowly but steadily reaping benefits of this strategy, as more visitors, including meetings, conference and incentive groups from North America and Canada primarily as well as countries such as Korea, Japan and China are visiting the Maltese Islands.
While the MTA’s MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and events) segment had participated back in the 2011 edition of Imex, this year was the first time for Conventions Malta as a brand. There were a number of local co-exhibitors sharing the stand with the MTA, namely, Alpine Sterling DMC, ECMeetings, Grand Hotel Excelsior Malta, Hilton Malta, InterContinental Malta, Mediterranean Conference Centre, Radisson Blu Resort St Julian’s, Special Interest Travel and the Westin Dragonara Resort.
Michelle Buttigieg, the MTA representative in America said that being present at a fair like this allows potential visitors to discuss the islands and learn what they have to offer directly with various stakeholders present.
Dr Gavin Gulia, the executive chairman of the MTA, continued on this point by noting that in 2017, the Maltese Islands saw an increase of 35.17% of arrivals from America when compared to 2016. This increased interest has continued in 2018, with the latest NSO statistics showing that in the period January to September, Malta and Gozo had a 29.2% increase in visitors from America, when compared with the same period last year.
Dr Gulia concluded by thanking all the staff in Malta as well as representatives in America as without their incessant work, these fantastic results would not be a possibility.