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Turkish tourists set to flock to Sharjah as dazzling emirate successfully completes EMITT 2007 in Istanbul

United Arab Emirates: Saturday, February 24 - 2007 @ 13:38

The Sharjah delegation, headed by Director General of Sharjah Commerce & Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA), H. E. Mohamed A. Al Noman, in addition to other senior representatives from SCTDA, Sharjah International Airport Authority and Air Arabia, has returned to the UAE convinced that its fourth successive appearance at EMITT was more successful than ever before.

“We have all worked very hard over the past few days at EMITT 2007 to showcase the wide variety of attractions that Sharjah has to offer to Turkey’s trade and tourism market,” said H. E. Mohamed A. Al Noman. “And we have succeeded. The SCTDA is aiming for Sharjah to receive 5000 tourists from this region in 2007, but I now think we can set our sights a little higher because of the substantial gains we have made here. A key factor in our fruitful activities has been spreading the word about Air Arabia’s direct flights from Istanbul to Sharjah, which weren’t established this time last year.”

EMITT, widely considered one of the most important events within the global tourism industry, this year saw more than 200,000 visitors over the four-day period – with thousands flocking to the giant Sharjah pavilion at the front of Hall Two. More than 2000 exhibitors from 55 countries took part, along with tourism ministries from 50 countries, ensuring that the Emirate of Sharjah gained crucial exposure to a number of growing markets and thus was able to strike a number of new business deals.

A number of positives were realized throughout EMITT 2007 for the SCTDA, including a series of high-profile interviews with top Turkish newspapers and television stations, along with winning the Best Promotional Material Award, for its comprehensive and entertaining range of information paraphernalia documenting the attractions of Sharjah. But H. E. Mohammed Al Noman pinpointed his specially arranged lunch meeting on day one with Turkey’s Minister for Culture & Tourism, Atilla Koç – one of the country’s leading politicians – as a personal and professional highlight.

“Establishing close relationships with people like Atilla Koç are priceless for the development of Sharjah’s tourism industry,” he said. “There is a deep connection felt between Sharjah and Turkey in terms of respect for and preservation of our cultures and heritage. This can only help in attracting more tourists from Turkey to Sharjah now that they are increasingly aware of what we stand for. Not only that, but Atilla Koç was a very charming man and even paid tribute to our pioneering education system.”

With Atilla Koç the star guest amongst many high-profile delegates who paid a visit to the Sharjah stand, tourism ties between Turkey and Sharjah have been strengthened and a number of specific points – allied to collaboration, shared knowledge and expertise between the two – will now form an important part of SCTDA’s strategic plans in how best to increase the number of tourists heading in either direction.

Speaking of its participation in EMITT 2007, H.E. Mohamed A. Al Noman said: “At a time statistics shows that most Turkish tourists prefer heritage tourism and shopping, SCTDA saw it as an essential task to take part in this exhibition where we can promote our emirate as a unique destination for the family to learn about heritage, history and culture. These things that will enhance the position of the Emirate of Sharjah on the world map.”

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Saturday, February 24- 2007 @ 13:38 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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