Tourism Trade Mission to the Middle East

09 Feb 2011

Tourism Ireland, together with industry partners from around Ireland, embarked on a five-day tourism sales mission in the UAE this week.  Organised in conjunction with VisitBritain and VisitScotland, the mission is taking in Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi. 

Consisting of B2B workshops, presentations, sales calls and networking events, the overall objective of the sales mission is to provide a platform for the participating tourism partners from Ireland to showcase their product to 60 of the key tour operators and travel agents in the UAE and to communicate what is unique about a holiday on the island of Ireland.  Tourism Ireland is encouraging these influential decision-makers to include Ireland in their future holiday programmes and to recommend it as a destination of choice for their customers. 

Commenting on the longer-term potential of new and developing markets such as the Middle East for tourism to the island of Ireland, Niall Gibbons, Tourism Ireland’s chief executive, said:  “The majority of our overseas visitors come from our core markets of Britain, the US, and Mainland Europe, and while this will continue, it is important to also consider the longer-term opportunities presented by markets in the Middle East and Asia.  In 2011, Tourism Ireland will grow the successful alliances we have developed with our travel trade partners in the GCC markets and will provide face-to-face opportunities for our Irish industry partners to meet these key trade contacts.  We will also focus on hubs like Dubai and Abu Dhabi, emphasising the ease of access to Ireland from there.

“Britain is a popular destination for people living in the Middle East, so it makes sense for Tourism Ireland to co-operate with VisitBritain and VisitScotland, to target those people travelling to GB and encourage them to visit the island of Ireland as part of their trip.”


Further information:
Sinéad Grace, Media & PR Manager, Tourism Ireland
Tel:  01-476 3493/ 087-685 9027

Note to Editors:
• Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
• Tourism is the island of Ireland’s largest indigenous industry; responsible for in excess of 4% of GNP in the Republic of Ireland and employing approximately 200,000 people.
• Approximately 6.6 million overseas visitors came to the island of Ireland in 2010, delivering revenue of approximately €3 billion.  Overseas tourism business accounts for 59% of all tourism revenue.
• Tourism Ireland’s international website is; there are 45 different websites, providing information in 19 different languages covering every continent.  In 2010 attracted almost 12 million unique visitors.



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