A gathering of over 200 delegates from 115 organizations and 22 destinations marked the commencement of the highly anticipated PATA Annual Summit and Adventure Mart 2023 (PASM 2023). Under the theme “Sustainability through Tourism,” the four-day event aims to address the challenges and solutions for a responsible recovery of the travel and tourism industry, both in Nepal and worldwide. With a diverse group of international thought leaders, industry shapers, and decision-makers, the summit promises engaging discussions and the collective pursuit of shared objectives.
Organized by the prestigious Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) and hosted by the Nepal Tourism Board, the event has received tremendous support from key stakeholders. The Pokhara Municipality serves as the Event Patron, while the Pokhara Tourism Council acts as the Local Partner. Together, they have created an extraordinary program that includes various activities spanning the duration of the summit.
The first day witnessed exclusive PATA internal meetings, including the Executive Board & Board Meeting, Chapter Congress, and Government Meeting. These closed-door sessions set the stage for strategic discussions concerning the association’s affairs, chapters, and the pressing issue of Human Capital Development across the Asia Pacific region. The day concluded with a grand Inauguration Ceremony and the prestigious PATA Awards Presentation, graced by the esteemed Chief Minister of Gandaki Province, Honourable Surendra Raj Pandey.
The second day commenced with a captivating keynote presentation by Andrew Staples, Regional Head (APAC) of Economist Impact, who provided invaluable insights into global economic, political, and cultural events shaping the future of tourism. Esteemed speakers, including industry experts from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Euromonitor International, OAG, and VISA, delved into “Insights into the Future of Tourism in the Asia Pacific,” sharing their expertise and analyses.
A highlight of the day was the panel discussion on “The Challenges and Opportunities for a Responsible Tourism Industry,” moderated by Carmen Roberts, presenter of BBC News’ The Travel Show. Esteemed panellists, including representatives from the Nepal Tourism Board, the Ministry of Tourism Maldives, Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority, and the Azerbaijan Tourism Board, explored the sustainable growth of the tourism industry, highlighting the need for responsible practices.
The agenda continued with a panel on “How to Drive Higher Value Tourism,” addressing the role of technology, sustainable practices, and market opportunities. Prominent industry figures from Tripadvisor, Tiger Mountain Pokhara Lodge, and Dolma Consulting shared their insights, providing a comprehensive perspective on driving tourism value.
The third day saw invigorating discussions on crisis management and challenges in the post-pandemic world. Experts from Tourism Malaysia, Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, and Nepal Tourism Board engaged in a panel moderated by GoCrisis, exploring strategies for navigating crises in the tourism industry. The importance of partnerships with local communities for sustainable tourism was discussed in another panel, featuring representatives from 3 Sisters Adventure Trekking, DASTA, and USAID Trade and Competitiveness Nepal.
The event also emphasized the role of influencers in shaping the tourism landscape, with a panel on “How to Work With Influencers on Social Media” moderated by the Nepal Tourism Board and featuring industry leaders from Uptrendly and UpThink Thailand.
The final day provided delegates with the opportunity to experience the natural beauty of Pokhara. Visits to Phewa Lake, Davis Falls, Gupeshwor Cave, the Peace Stupa, and Shiva Temple allowed participants to immerse themselves in the local culture and breathtaking scenery.
The success of the PATA Annual Summit and Adventure Mart 2023 was made possible through the collective efforts of the Nepal Tourism Board, the Pokhara Municipality, the Pokhara Tourism Council, and numerous sponsors. Their support, combined with the dedication of PATA and the delegates, ensured a memorable and impactful event.
Written by: Supaporn Pholrach (Joom)