Online media can play a major role in promoting tourism in the UAE given its rapid expansion worldwide, according to HH Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, minister of culture, youth and community development.
In remarks at a function marking the first anniversary of the launching of hotelandrest.com website in Abu Dhabi, he said the online media would continue to play a key part in promoting the UAE in the region and internationally.
Sheikh Nahyan called for maximum utilization of the spread of online media in promoting the UAE culture and heritage, adding that this would bring socio-economic benefits.
“The UAE’s tourism industry needs more specialized online media means to promote the country internally and externally,” he said, adding that investment in the tourism sector in the UAE exceeded Dh80 billion in 2013, making it the top tourism investor in the Middle East.
He said official data showed the tourism sector’s contribution to the country’s GDP stood at around 193.6 billion in 2013.
The function, organized by Iris Media at Emirates Palace Hotel, was also attended by HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, the hotel’s general manager Holger Schroth, the hotel’s manager Alexander Schneider and other officials, hotel managers, travel agents, and journalists.
“We have launched a new edition of the website to mark its first year…it is intended to cope with the latest developments in this respect and to provide the best content and form to our guests and viewers,” the site’s manager Hanin Al Dawoud said.
“We are keen to keep abreast of technology in online media and social networks which have become the fastest growing sector in this field…we aim to become the most important website in the UAE,” she added.
The site’s media manager Mr Ahmed Al Majaida said the site had been significantly improved in both form and content to satisfy all tastes.
“Our decision to launch this site followed a sharp rise in online marketing spending, which is estimated to reach nearly Dh11 billion in 2014,” he said.
During the reception, a draw was held for numerous prizes offered by Emirates Palace, Hyatt Capital Gate, Hyatt Park Saadiyat, Eastern Mangroves Suites by Jannah , Phoenicia Beirut and Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank.