Published on : Wednesday, May 23, 2018
In continued efforts to position the African continent as an ideal business events destination, representatives from various African countries including South Africa’s Deputy Minister of Tourism Elizabeth Thabethe; Ugandan Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities representative, Rosemary Kobutagi Twinomugisha and Chief Executive Officer of the Rwanda Convention Bureau, Denise B. Omany, were last week, at IMEX Frankfurt showcasing a united force and promoting the diversity of products that Africa has to offer to the international business event traveller.
IMEX Frankfurt is one of the largest global business events trade exhibition. It attracts all types of service providers who have something to offer for events such as hotels, incentives and event agencies, convention centres, meeting and conference planners, and many more. New travel trends policy issues affecting the global business events industry are also discussed at IMEX.
The delegations from various African countries form an integral part in shaping Africa’s stories and came together to market the continent on the global stage to make sure that this continent will remain successful in years to come.
Speaking on the trade floor where over 14 000 international delegates were exhibiting, buying and engaging with travel trade products, Deputy Minister Thabethe commented on the importance of South Africa’s and African countries’ participation in global trade shows, stating that “As owner and host of Africa’s biggest business events trade show, Meetings Africa, which takes place in South Africa annually in February, we are happy to see an increasing number of African countries also participating here because then we are definitely living up to Meeting Africa’s strategic intent of advancing Africa together. African countries should continue to unite and work in partnership to take Africa to the world and in turn realise Agenda 2063**. African countries have the capacity, infrastructure and resources to host international meetings and events.”
Ugandan Ministry of Tourism, Wildlife and Antiquities representatives, Rosemary Kobutagi Twinomugisha highlighted the importance of Africans “showcasing our competence to the world by cultivating our home grown brands and not relying on multinational companies to develop franchises in our countries, but rather partnering with them to build African economies.”
Janet Mueni, Acting General Manager: Marketing and Sales at the Kenyata International Convention Centre echoed these sentiments: “We are here to not only market our country but to also take the opportunity share positive narratives about the continent, ensuring that the African continent is always top of mind and well known for offering leisure and business travellers world-class experiences.”
Denise B. Omany Chief Executive Officer of the Rwanda Convention Bureau commented that: “As Rwanda, we want participation from even more African countries at such trade shows. While we are new entrants in the business events market, we are already realising the positive impact of being here. Our President, Paul Kagame chairs the African Union and as a country we are of the firm belief that Africans must present a united front when relating to the international community.”
IMEX Frankfurt once again lived up to expectations with organisers declaring that engagement and creativity reached new heights this year.
“With an array of content covering education, technology, association and corporate planning, public policy and more, IMEX has become the place to demonstrate the power of meetings to deliver engagement,” said Chief Executive Officer of IMEX Group, Carina Bauer.
For the African continent, IMEX Frankfurt was certainly the ideal platform and provided the opportunity to reassure the global business events industry that Africa is very much open for business and that hosting meetings and events on the continent is a must-do.
This visit to IMEX Frankfurt followed the hugely successful Africa’s Travel Indaba which was hosted by South African Tourism in Durban earlier this month, where Africa showcased itself to the world in the most impressive manner with no less than 23 countries exhibiting.
IMEX Frankfurt took place in May, which is also Africa Month with celebrations expected to take place across the continent on the 25th of May.