The tourism sector in Sharjah now contributes more than 8.8% or AED9 billion (US$2.45 billion) of the emirate’s annual GDP figure of AED102.5 billion ($27.91 billion), H.E. Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, chairman of Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority has revealed.
Al Midfa revealed the figures ahead of Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority's (SCTDA) Sharjah Hospitality Forum that will focus on sustainability.
The forum will bring together businesses to discuss ways to grow tourism under the theme of ‘Sustainable Tourism to Support Business Opportunities’.
Al Midfa previously told Hotelier Middle East that Sharjah needs more hotel rooms if it is to reach the goal of more than 10 million visitors by 2021. He revealed Sharjah is working to increase its hotel inventory by 50% by 2021.
Regarding the forum, he said that tourism is "one of the most important contributors to strengthening the national economy in general Through the hosting of the latest edition of the forum, we seek to strengthen bridges of cooperation among the hospitality sector stakeholders, in order to chalk out development strategies required to enhance the emirate’s tourism sector and to ensure its sustainable development."
Al Midfa added that: “The annual event has been designed to enhance the efforts of all tourism industry stakeholders in the Emirate of Sharjah, with an aim to further improve the standards of tourism services offered by the emirate and to enhance the overall tourism experience for visitors and tourists alike.”
The forum is set to be held on November 18, at Al Jawaher Reception and Convention Center in Sharjah.