Slovenia is a smaller sized European country squeezed in between more muscular neighbors that for many years have already been making heavy inroads into both the MICE and leisure tourism markets. In recent years, however, both business and leisure travellers have been discovering the plethora of gems, hidden corners and wonderful infrastructure that Slovenia has to offer, and it is now fair to say that the secret “is out” and it is rapidly establishing itself as one of the finest and much less trodden European destinations.
There is a similar story in South East Asia that has strong parallels to what’s happening in Slovenia, and it is that of Cambodia. Whilst Phnom Penh and Siem Reap (the latter for the phenomenal Angkor Wat world’s largest temple complex) have been on the itinerary of the FIT for many years already, the country has undoubtedly remained in the shadow of its eastern powerhouse neighbour of Thailand, as many countries in the region have, and also of its western neighbour of Vietnam, which has been making strong progress in leisure travel for some time and is annually edging deeper into the MICE sector to enhance its global profile.
From being previously sat its neighbourly shade, however, Cambodia is starting to emerge and is making moves to establish itself as a confident and welcoming destination in its own right for the business as well as the leisure traveller. The clearest example of this new self-belief is the maiden Cambodia Travel Mart (CTM), an event in collaboration with Slickbooth Holding and supervised by TTG Asia Media & Events that is scheduled to take place this November 17-19 and to bring the best of the region together in the stunning Sokha Siem Reap Resort & Convention Centre.
The CTM event was initiated by His Excellency Dr. Thong Khon, Minister of Tourism Cambodia, and back in 2015 was principally approved and permitted by the Royal Government of Cambodia. The event will provide a further boon to a country that has been experiencing healthy tourism growth in past years under the successful tenure of Prime Minister Samdach Ahka Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun Sen – in 2016 there was a 5% growth in tourism and stats available for 2017 are suggesting that it will follow this trend, with the trajectory showing an expected 7 million tourists set to visit the country in 2020.
Over the three days of the event CTM will offer a business tourism forum between tourism companies, tourism operators, tourism experts, a range of national and international media, and a total of 500 companies and agencies. It is supported by tourism organisation of ASEAN member state countries to improve local and regional tourism and the event is the opportunity to promote tourism destinations, trade service packages, exchange experience and make business partners. Alongside the ASEAN nations participating at CTM the opportunity for extra business is further enhanced by other Asian big hitters having pavilions at the show, particularly China and South Korea.
“Cambodia Travel Mart 2017 organised from 17-19 November in Siem Reap will be the best tourism business platform in Southeast Asia for buyers and sellers from different countries to participate in tourism business networking and business opportunities,” said Dr. Thong Knon. “CTM 2017 will showcase tourism products and services in Southeast Asia and promote tourism potential in the region.”
Kongres Magazine looks forward to attending the maiden CTM and will be reporting live from the show as well as providing a post-show review in our November issue.