Following a a success stint as leader govt of the Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Construction Authority, Haitham Mattar closing 12 months moved to a brand new function in Saudi Arabia.
The Center Japanese vacation spot has been embarking on a programme – referred to as Imaginative and prescient 2030 – designed to overtake its economic system, diversifying clear of a reliance on oil.
The improvement of the tourism sector is predicted to play a key function within the technique, and, as senior consultant to the Saudi Fee for Tourism & Nationwide Heritage, Mattar is easily positioned to utilise his experience.
Chatting with Amy Kitchingman for Breaking Shuttle Information, he finds “the luck of any vacation spot comes all the way down to technique, and any vacation spot and not using a tourism technique is a recipe for failure”.
For Saudi, this implies an build up within the availability of visas, and a extra welcoming setting for global travellers.
As Mattar explains: “Saudi has an intensive tradition, a deep-rooted historical past, nice heritage, gorgeous nature and herbal belongings together with seashores, mountains and shocking dessert.
“As of late Saudi Arabia is that specialize in the short- to medium-term, the place through 2022 the rustic goals to peer 62 million guests every 12 months, emerging to 100 million every year through 2030.
“The important thing center of attention as of late is on selling the cultural studies, the heritage and the journey product to guests internationally.”
The release of a brand new e-visa machine has been a specific luck, with Chinese language and British visitors flocking to the rustic.
The Pink Sea Construction will turn out to be the jewel of Saudi tourism
For now, the bedrock of Saudi hospitality stays spiritual tourism, with thousands and thousands of Muslim travellers visiting Mecca every 12 months as a part of the Hajj.
On the other hand, within the longer-term there are plans so as to add a extra leisure-focused providing.
Mattar provides: “In addition to the cultural providing, Saudi Arabia has been ramping up the leisure sector.
“The vacation spot has observed plenty of very huge concert events, the boxing, the coming of Formulation E and the Dakar Rally, all of that have acted as call for turbines, positioning Saudi at the world map.
“This has allowed folks to come back and spot the rustic, and revel in it another way.”
Because the marketplace grows, Saudi Arabia will even want to expand its tourism infrastructure, with plans in position to expand the amenities global travellers be expecting.
Leader amongst those investments are plenty of ‘gigaprojects’, led through the Pink Sea Construction, which can see dozens of unique luxurious accommodations opened in a function construct vacation spot within the north of the rustic.
Mattar explains: “A few of these puts are totally untouched and the rustic is placing a large number of coverage in position, however there are some unbelievable alternatives.
“Saudi Arabia is concentrated right here on sustainable tourism, the time period ‘overtourism’ all the time involves thoughts, however so long as our companions proceed to paintings the best way they’re, with the tourism board, in managing the assets they are able to conquer any issues.”
Mattar used to be himself lately recognised for his Exceptional Contribution to the Shuttle & Tourism Business through the International Shuttle Awards
Having a look forward, and Saudi Arabia shall be presenting its new tourism providing at ITB Berlin, the most important Eu business display, in March.
“Saudi closing participated at ITB Berlin in 2017, when there used to be a focal point on Islamic tourism.
“This 12 months, aligned with Imaginative and prescient 2030, and that specialize in the important thing Eu markets – Germany, the United Kingdom, France and one of the Scandinavian nations – Saudi shall be debuting its new pavilion, which has been fantastically designed and can be offering an unique revel in.
“Guests from internationally cannot best do industry, but additionally immerse themselves within the historical past and the tradition of Saudi Arabia, be that the meals, the dates or the espresso.”
The Saudi Fee for Tourism & Nationwide Heritage is dedicated to the sustainable construction of the business within the kingdom.
It goals to offer a transparent course for the business, running in shut partnership with companions to seek out and create a local weather wherein the business is predicted to reach a prime level of self-sufficiency.
In finding out extra at the reliable website online.