UAE inspires other Gulf states to consider tourism in a different light
May 9 - Given that UAE has become of one of the tourist destinations of choice, other Gulf states are inclined to follow a similar model and promote tourism in their countries. In this regard, Oman is looking to diversify its economy with the help of tourism. "The government decided to develop tourism and diversify the economy by not letting just the oil play the 100 per cent role," Salim Bin Adey Al Mamari, director-general of Oman's Tourism Promotion department. "Other sectors can also play that role and tourism is one of them,” he added. Al Mamari also pointed out that Oman had already made a strategy in 2008 to spend over Dh146.9 million) per year to promote the country internationally.
However, Oman is looking for tourists of a different kind: "We are not looking for backpackers but for those who will spend money and who will stay more in the country," said Al Mamri. "We are targeting high-end tourists."
Similarly, Kuwait hopes to do the same this year. I think [the UAE's] experience has let other countries realise that tourism can bring in a lot of money for the countries," said Majda Behbehani, Kuwait's director of Marketing and Foreign Relations for Tourism. "With the oil there can also be tourism," she said. Majda said that the financial stability in GCC countries has always directed the flow of tourism from those countries and not to them.
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