PATA Travel Mart 2018 (PTM 2018), hosted by Malaysia, has attracted over 1,400 delegates from 70 global destinations. The delegate numbers embraced 389 sellers from 208 organisations and 33 destinations with local sellers comprising 32% of the total, along with 252 buyers from 241 organisations and 53 source markets.
The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) was also pleased to welcome 210 local and international young tourism professionals including PATA Student Chapter members from Bangladesh Dhaka University, Canada Vancouver Capilano University, Malaysia Taylor’s University, Nepal, Philippines LPU-Manila, and Singapore Temasek Polytechnic. The students were part of the PATA Youth Symposium held on Wednesday, September 12, hosted by the Langkawi Development Authority (LADA) and the Alumni Association of UiTM Students’ Representative Council (PIMPIN) in collaboration with the PATA Malaysia Chapter, Tourism Malaysia and Langkawi UNESCO Global Geopark.
PTM 2018 officially opened in Langkawi, Malaysia on Wednesday, September 12 with the PTM 2018 Welcome Reception, presided by the Right Honourable Dato Seri Dr. Wan Azizah Dr. Wan Ismail, Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia, taking place at the Langkawi International Convention Center (LICC).
During the Welcome Reception, the Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Malaysia, the Honourable YB Tuan Mohamaddin Ketap, noted that, “For many, PTM is considered the biggest tourism trade platform in Asia Pacific. As the host country of PTM, it is an opportunity for us to promote Malaysia as the ideal leisure and business destination. With an overwhelming 67 Malaysian sellers on board this year, we are really leveraging hard on this opportunity to meet international buyers. The Malaysian sellers include the private sector and state government/agencies such as Sabah, Sarawak, Selangor, Penang, Labuan, Kedah and Johor.”
Early in the day, delegates had the chance to gain insights into product development, machine learning, data analytics and artificial intelligence at the Travolution Asia Forum 2018, organised in partnership with Travel Weekly Group. Furthermore, for the first time at PTM, the world’s 15 most innovative travel and tourism start-ups and pitched their business models to a jury panel at the World Tourism Forum Lucerne (WTFL) Start-Up Innovation Camp 2018.
Addressing a media briefing on Thursday, September 13 at the Mahsuri International Exhibition Centre (MIEC), the official venue of the event, Dr. Hardy said, “For over 40 years, the event’s continued success has been due to its ability to strike the right balance between quality and quantity when it comes to buyers and sellers.”