BI-ME , 03-07-2008

Tourism indicators show that 2008 will be a slower year but the Middle East is demonstrating incredible resilience. Despite the financial turmoil of the past months, global tourism is thriving and is expected to generate some US$8 trillion during 2008. There will be years of growth ahead in the emerging markets of India and China, but the big success story today remains in the Middle East. Across the region, cranes still dominate the skyline, with hotel brands expanding their property portfolios at a ferocious speed. In a new report, Deloitte analyzes hotel performance across the Middle East region and the key factors driving growth. In 2007, the region had the largest increase in visitor numbers in the world – up to 13%- with Saudi Arabia enjoying one of the best growth rates across the Middle East, at almost 51%. The region had the largest rise in air passengers in 2007 as well, and is spending around 43$ billion improving its airports. Its hotel business grew faster than any other region, apart from Central and South America, with revenue per available room (revPAR) up 17%.

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