DUBAI, United Arab Emirates.- Leaders from across the regional and international exhibition sector have gathered in Dubai for the UFI MEA Conference, taking advantage of the opportunity to see how the city has led the way globally in restarting business events in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The conference, the first fully in-person event for UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry since the onset of the global pandemic, was hosted on 26 May at Dubai World Trade Centre, with the city’s well-established measures in place to safeguard the health of all participants and delegates. The one-day event was attended by 150 attendees from 10 countries, with His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General of Dubai Tourism and Dubai World Trade Centre Authority and Kai Hattendorf, Managing Director and CEO of UFI, delivering welcome addresses.
The UFI MEA Conference brings together leading players from the Middle East and Africa region and beyond, to network, exchange ideas and forge new partnerships.
Issam Kazim, CEO of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing, said: “Driven by the city’s strong, decisive leadership and prudent handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, Dubai has led the way internationally in safely restarting exhibitions, trade shows and other business events, which play a vital role in economic and knowledge development locally. Just as we worked with local and international stakeholders to ensure the city was well-placed to resume events, we are committed to working with the wider industry to share knowledge and learnings. Hosting the UFI MEA conference has enabled us to engage with key leaders from the global business events community and provide a platform for its continued rebound. We are keen to support the sector worldwide, and welcome organisers to get their event plans back on track by moving their events to the safe environment of Dubai.”
Naji El Haddad, Regional Director for the Middle East & Africa region at UFI, said: “UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, is delighted to hold its first post-pandemic in-person event here in Dubai, UAE, one of the first cities that restarted business events. The conference is a clear manifestation of the industry’s resilience and determination to thrive despite the current circumstances. The success of today’s event wouldn’t have been possible without the support of our host, Dubai World Trade Centre and our destination partner, Dubai Tourism. Special thanks to all our sponsors, speakers and delegates for their contribution and participation.”
The event was the latest in a series of important shows and conferences taking place in the city over recent months, following on from Gitex Technology week, Gulfood and Arabian Travel Market, Gulfood. Over the coming months, Dubai will continue to host major events including Arab Health and The Hotel Show, as momentum builds towards Expo 2020 Dubai.