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Ajman, the smallest emirate of the UAE, is witnessing a rising tourism sector. It registered a revenue of Dh90 million in the first quarter of this year compared to last year’s Dh77 million as per data from the Ajman Tourism Development Department (ATDD).
With 120,000 visitors, the hotel occupancy rates in the first quarter of 2015 soared to 70% in comparison to 56% last year. Also, hotels and hotel apartments have increased in number. In fact, about 1.1 million people are forecast to visit the emirate this year.
The strong figures point towards the robust awareness of Ajman’s tourism offerings. To enhance these further, ATDD has planned more promotional programmes ranging from roadshows in China and Central Europe, to participation in exhibitions, to tourism tie-ups with other emirates like Sharjah. Ajman and Sharjah will run a tour bus that will ply the two areas starting September.
The major shift in Ajman’s tourism policy took place during the end of 2011. From 2012, Ajman started its promotions as a tourist destination. The end of last year saw ATDD kicking off its Ajman Tourism Investment Map project. It will analyse the existing and potential infrastructure needs and assess the probable outcomes of tourism on its economy. A survey will be carried out on the transport, food and beverage, hospitality and entertainment sectors. ATTD teams up with both the government and non-government sectors to help improve the emirate’s tourism industry.
To further the cause, the Ajman government is also building modern infrastructure to attract tourists. It has started work on its airport, which is expected to be functional by 2017 and aims for 2.5 million travellers.
With its unique attractions, Ajman projects itself as a destination where people get a gentler pace of life. In fact, its proximity to Dubai enhances its chances of becoming a potential destination for business and leisure.
• Programs, infrastructure development focus on boosting tourism
• Its proximity to Dubai may make it the next business destination
• The roadshow in China covers Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou
Source: Arva Shikari, Special to Properties
The writer is a freelancer