Category Archives: Conventions

Odisha’s maiden Travel Bazaar from Oct 15-17 in Bhubaneswar

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The Department of Tourism, Government of Odisha in collaboration with Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry  (FICCI) is organising the first Odisha Travel Bazaar (OTB) on October 15-17, 2017, at Bhubaneswar. According to Sanjeev Kumar Mohanty, Head, FICCI-Odisha State Council, there will be around 40 foreign tour operators, 10 top of the line inbound operators, 20 leading domestic tour operators from across India and 5 leading airlines participating as hosted buyers. The tourism fraternity of Odisha comprising of hotels and tour operators will be promoting the tourism products of Odisha as sellers. “There will be an inaugural session and a day of B2B and B2G meetings to allow interaction between the buyers and sellers and showcase the tourism potential of Odisha,” said Mohanty. The objective of this event is to create a platform to aggressively promote the tourist destinations of Odisha to its buyers from India and across the world. Consequently the strategic focus would be on inbound and domestic tourism. OTB also plans to address investment opportunities in tourism infrastructure of the state to its target investors.

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Global Panorama Showcase reaches to Kochi

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The Global Panorama Showcase (GPS) is underway in Kochi. After successful shows in Ahmedabad, Chandigarh and Kolkata, GPS Kochi saw a conglomeration of 750+ registrations on the first day. Buyers from cities like Salem, Coimbatore, Thrissur, Trivandrum, Calicut and nearby cities will be attending the three day event. The first day witnessed knowledge presentations by Interglobe Technology Quotient, FXkart, Genting Hong Kong, cyber security session by Prevoyance Cyber Forensic, Trawelltag Cover-More, Sahibji Group of Companies, Zanzibar Tourism and the much waited GST session by team GMJ & Co followed by presentations from Infozeal and Cleartax. The next two days will notice more buyers for one-on-one B2B meetings.

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MICE crisis in hotels post GST: HRAWI

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Post the Goods & Services Tax (GST) roll out earlier this month, the Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE) related activities have been hit hard. One of the anomalies that emerged post GST roll-out was that MICE activities and other events held in hotels outside of home state are not eligible for Input Tax Credit (ITC). This has been leading to cancellations and postponements for pre booked events. Given the emergence of MICE Tourism as one of the fastest growing segments, and its potential to disrupt growth, the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI) has appealed to the Government to revisit this particular aspect of the GST. “There is an overall reduction in MICE bookings across hotels in India as compared to the same period last year. Advance bookings are being cancelled and new bookings are not happening. Most companies are considering holding events in the same State where they are registered under GST. Businesses may still have digested the high GST, but without ITC, it just becomes unviable. MICE tourism is too important a segment for the nation to overlook,” says Dilip Datwani, President, HRAWI. Talking about the GST slabs for the industry he adds, “The 28 per cent GST rate for rooms with tariff of Rs. 7500/- and above is one of the highest in the world and will seriously affect cash flow. Moreover, the tax percentage will be determined based on the published or declared rate which is creating a lot of hardship for the industry. The association has appealed the Government to remove this condition and determine the tax percentage based on the actual transaction value and has also requested to review the ITC …

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Dubai auditing trade conference next year

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The 2018 Institute of Internal Auditors International Conference, to be held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, is set to attract 3500 delegates from 110 countries, next May. The conference will take place at Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre, part of the Dubai World Trade Centre complex, from May 6-9, 2018. Dubai Business Events (DBE), the city’s official convention bureau, collaborated with Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC) and the UAE Internal Auditors Association (IAA) to successfully bid for the event. Issam Kazim, Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing, said: “As we work to strengthen Dubai’s reputation as an ideal destination to host business events, and most importantly, a global knowledge hub, business events such as the IIA International Conference further fuel our journey towards achieving our goal.” Themed ‘Connecting the World Through Innovation’, the conference will lay emphasis on innovation and ways to tackle current technology issues affecting internal audit.

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International aviation conference underway in Guwahati

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The Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Government of India, and the International Chamber for Service Industry (ICSI) have jointly organised an International Conference on Strengthening Aviation Network between North East Indian Region and Bangladesh, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam (BCLMV countries) at Radisson Blu Hotel Guwahati in Assam, which is underway. The mega event aims to bring nations closer by augmenting and improving travel, trade and people to people contacts through a stronger aviation network. It will be attended by dignitaries from the Ministry of Civil Aviation, Airports Authority of India, as well as Indian and international carriers and other leading aviation business entities. Over the past few years India’s trade with the BCLMV countries has grown exponentially with the total trade with CLMV countries growing seven-fold from $1.4 billion in 2005 to $10.3 billion in 2015 and current trade volume with Bangladesh at about $6.6 billion. The key points of deliberation at the conference were the need of direct connectivity of airlines between NER and BCLMV countries, infrastructure development and capacity building along with the liberalisation of ASEAN open sky policy for NER (I).

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TCEB highlights focus areas to enhance MICE

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The new President of Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) has highlighted four focus areas to enhance MICE in the country: growing in parallel with the development of the country, growing in a high potential market, growing with equality and growing strongly. Chiruit Isarangkun Na Ayuthaya, President of TCEB, said, “TCEB has the direct duty of developing every aspect of the MICE industry, from considering the needs of the market, the strengths and weaknesses of the country, the problems within the country, and to find ways to overcome those issues, as well as developing every area related to MICE, which is the appropriate role of the public sector.” From statistics over the last 10 years, Thailand has received approximately 150 billion baht of revenue from the MICE industry, both domestic and international, created approximately 164,000 jobs, and gained around 10.5 billion baht of revenue from taxation. Furthermore, in 2016, the International Congress and Convention Association, or ICCA,placed Thailand as having hosted174 events, ranking Thailand 24th, an improvement from 27th in 2015, with Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Pattaya ranking higher than the previous year as well. In terms of exhibitions, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, or UFI, ranked Thailand the number 1 among ASEAN nations in terms of exhibition space sold over the past 5 years (2011-2015). In terms of general exhibition space, Thailand ranked in the top five ASEAN countries. Additionally, Thailand has a total of 256,984 metres squared of exhibition space across nine exhibition centres in Bangkok and other important MICE cities. To build MICE into a key sector in developing the country, therefore requires the use of four directions for enhancing the MICE industry and create …

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Carlson Wagonlit Travel introduces RoomIt by CWT

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With an aim to create and deliver innovative experience to customer accommodations globally, Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) launched its new business division, RoomIt by CWT. “RoomIt by CWT simplifies the hotel booking process and puts the most relevant lodging options in one place. CWT is committed to giving our clients a wide range of global options at the most competitive rates and our investment into RoomIt will enable better, more personalised service to our travellers,” said Scott Brennan, President, Hotels, Carlson Wagonlit Travel. RoomIt is designed to satiate the changing customer needs with increased functionality and personalisation capabilities while equipping companies with the tools to effectively monitor employees’ travel schedules.

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2nd GMTM 2017 to showcase MICE destinations in India

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The second edition of the Global MICE Travel Mart (GMTM) organised by FICCI, will be held on September 14-16, 2017. This was announced by Rahul Chakravarty, Senior Director – Tourism, FICCI, on the sidelines of FICCI’s Tourism Investors Meet that took place last week. The annual event will be instrumental in putting MICE destinations in India on the itineraries of the foreign tour operators and opinion leaders from India. Recognising the need to propel the highly-potential MICE industry to greater heights, FICCI introduced GMTM in 2016 where the inaugural edition saw a participation of over 30 buyers from 12 countries. Face-to-face meetings among exhibitors and buyers were held along with a panel discussion where insights and challenges of the MICE industry were discussed.

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GPS to introduce international destination workshops

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The second leg of this year’s GPS, starting July 13, will launch an unique programme of introducing educational workshops with international destinations. Harmandeep Singh Anand, Managing Director, GPS, says, “We have started working with international tourism boards to do an educational workshop for travel agents starting this September-October. Titled ‘GPS Educational Destination Workshop – International’ (EDWIn), it will involve interested agents signing up to travel to a particular international destination to learn about the country at a highly subsidised participation fee.” GPS has already tied up with Singapore Airlines as its international airline partner as well as Genting HK. It is also in talks with various NTOs including Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, Korea, UAE, Egypt, Turkey and Greece. GPS will soon launch a similar programme for domestic destination in partnership with various state boards. Anand explains further, “This will be open only to tier II and tier III travel agents as they are the ones who don’t get enough exposure to the trade as against those in metro cities.” Hitting five more cities through July and August this year is the second leg of the Global Panorama Showcase (GPS – the multi-city trade show for tier II and III cities). It will start with Ahmedabad on July 13, going on to Chandigarh on July 20, Kolkata on July 27, reaching Kochi on August 3 and ending in Pune on August 10. The show will stay in each of these cities for three days.

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ADTOI held GST workshop for members in Delhi

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In a bid to prepare its members for the new Goods and Service Tax (GST) regime, Association of Domestic Tour Operators of India(ADTOI) organised a workshop for its members on July 1, 2017. The workshop was conducted at India Habitat Centre, Lodhi Road, New Delhi. G. D. Lohani, Commissioner, Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC); Shikhar Pant, Assistant commissioner, CBEC; Ashish Gupta, Consulting CEO, FAITH; Gyan Bhushan, Economic Advisor, Government of India and other officials from Ministry of Tourism were present during  the meeting to interact with the members and  answer their queries on GST.  

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