The 2013 Middle East and Africa Duty Free Association (MEADFA) Conference was recently conducted in Doha. This is the first time the conference is being held in Qatar. On this occasion, Qatar Duty Free hosted the Conference.
The conference centers around four key themes: role and importance of commercial activities in new airport design and infrastructure; geopolitical and economic challenges across the Middle East and North Africa; understanding consumers in the African continent; and defending the duty free and travel retail industry in the region. The role of retail in new airport infrastructure is a key focus of the conference. As the Association embraces Africa officially, the conference has also enabled delegates to learn more about the African consumer, whose importance to global travel retail is set to grow.
During the conference, delegates took in a mix of in-depth presentations and panel discussions and workshops. The conference attracted over 500 delegates. At the 2012 conference, brand owners and suppliers represented 45% of total delegates, while duty free retailers and travel operators represented 32% of the total. 54% of the audience came from outside the Middle East.