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Tourist guides get rare peek into oil-gas industry

United Arab Emirates: Tuesday, April 12 - 2011 @ 13:40

The training featured presentations by the Sharjah Petroleum Council, Petrofac and Dana Gas offering tourist guides an essential and broader understanding and knowledge of this important part of Sharjah’s economy. Following the presentations, the tourist guides were taken to the Sajaa Gas Field and Al Hamriyah LPG facility to witness and experience first-hand the practical side of their theoretical class and orientation.

Commenting on the initiative, HH Mohamad A. Al Noman, Director General of the SCTDA, said Sharjah has been making constant efforts to enhance quality standards of the tourism industry in the emirate according to international norms. “Tourist guides play a crucial role in presenting and interpreting any tourist destination and in enriching a visitor’s experience,” he pointed out.

This is the first time that Sajaa Gas Field has been opened to tourist guides and is part of the constant efforts and initiatives to educate and train tourist guides boosting the overall experience of all visitors to the Cultural Capital of the Arab and Islamic world.

The master class for the tourist guides had been organised by the SCTDA in collaboration with the Sharjah Petroleum Council, Petrofac and Dana Gas. Participants represented the best of the best of travel and tourism industry in the country such as Arabian Adventures and Alpha Tours among many others or work as freelance tourist guides.

Coordinated and initiated by the World Federation of Tourist Guides Associations (WFTGA), the International Tourist Guide Day was first held on February 21 1990, when tourist guides from 15 WFTGA member countries participated. This year, however, tourist guides in more than 60 countries celebrated this day.

Appreciating the UAE’s busy tourism season in the past few months, the SCTDA decided to conduct this master class towards the end of the busy winter season, enabling more tourist guides to participate and benefit from it.

WFTGA, an NGO in operational relations to UNESCO, is the global body for tourist guides with more than 120,000 members in 65 countries. Members of the WFTGA are all professional and qualified tourist guides who adhere to a Code of Practice and Quality Charter.

Given the constant increase in international tourist arrivals to Sharjah in recent months and years and the growing need for trained and qualified tourist guides, the development of this professional industry remains high on the agenda of the Authority. The SCTDA has lined up more educational and training initiatives for the tourist guides, in addition to its standard tourist guide license course.

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Tuesday, April 12- 2011 @ 13:40 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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