In an effort to support local talent, Abu Dhabi’s tourism industry is being encouraged to consider wider engagement with local entrepreneurs.
This is being done to boost the emirate’s tourism value as part of a new initiative introduced by Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi).
The Authority’s initiative is set to stimulate the emirate’s tourism sector in line with the government’s vision of diversifying non-oil GDP industries.
“Introduction of an inward investment strategy will support local economy and will encourage entrepreneurs to start their own tourism-related SMEs. In turnm they will supply their goods and services to the hospitality industry,” said Sultan Al Dhaheri, acting executive director of tourism at TCA Abu Dhabi.
“This will ensure domestic and international tourists receive an authentic visitor experience. At the same time working with the public and private sectors will enhance key tourism offerings across Abu Dhabi. There are several opportunities for local SMEs or investors to offer their products and services,” added Sultan Al Dhaheri.
Some of the local offerings include Emirati dates and coffee, local chocolate on the pillow, Arabian perfumes and scented products, works by Emirati artists adorning walls and corridors, local artefacts and mementos in gift shops.
Omar Al Busaidy, Abu Dhabi experience development unit head said: “Our fundamental aim is to encourage private sector involvement in tourism. Our initial priority is to see tangible results within the emirate’s hotel industry. In turn, this will encourage Abu Dhabi-based SMEs to grow their businesses and become more competitive locally and internationally.”
The introduction of specialised visitor experiences, such as the Abu Dhabi Pearl Journey is operated from the Eastern Mangroves Marina. This initiative highlights the emirate’s pearling past aboard a traditional Jalboot dhow.
The authority’s investment tourism strategy will be implemented by establishing tourism as a priority sector in Abu Dhabi’s investment attraction mandate through development of a wider investor outreach programme, and creating a powerful value proposition to position Abu Dhabi as a destination of choice for tourism investment. Priority asset sectors identified by the new unit include hotels, theme parks, experience centres, museums, and dining, lifestyle and retail destinations as well as public spaces, camp sites and recreational centres.