1+4 “Tourism + MICE”: PATA Annual Summit 2024 officially opened today (May 16) in Macao helping to raise the city’s profile internationally
Macao Government Tourism Office
2024-05-16 21:50
  • PATA Annual Summit 2024 officially opens in Macao

  • Representative of the Secretary for Economy and Finance of the Macao SAR Government, Director of MGTO Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes welcomes delegates

  • PATA Chair Peter Semone delivers his opening remarks

  • MGTO Director joins other tourism leaders on “Panel Discussion: Marketing and Branding in Asia Pacific Tourism”

  • Special session PATA – WTCF China Dialogue held this morning

  • Tourism students from the Greater Bay Area and international attend the PATA Youth Symposium

  • MGTO and PATA held a press conference to brief local and visiting media about the destination and the event

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The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) Annual Summit 2024 opening ceremony was held today (May 16) afternoon at the Grand Lisboa Palace Resort Macau, gathering over 400 tourism industry delegates from around 30 countries and regions for a major conference under the theme “Reimagining Tourism”, helping to raise the profile of Macao as a “tourism + MICE” destination.

Delegates from across the Asia Pacific were welcomed by the Representative of the Secretary for Economy and Finance of the Macao SAR Government, Director of Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO) Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, the Managing Director of SJM Resorts, S.A. Daisy Ho, PATA Chair Peter Semone, Secretary and Treasurer of PATA, Suman Pandey, PATA CEO Noor Ahmad Hamid, MGTO Deputy Director, Ricky Hoi, and PATA Macau Chapter Vice President, Eric Fong. Participants in the event include representatives of around 200 tourism and related sectors entities from across the region and beyond. 

Showcase Macao’s development as a world centre of tourism and leisure

Speaking at the welcome ceremony, the representative of the Secretary for Economy and Finance of the Macao SAR Government, MGTO Director Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, said that “PATA and its flagship events have all along been an important platform for Macao stakeholders to connect and, above all, for us to come together to build a vibrant yet responsible development of the tourism industry in the Asia-Pacific region.” 

“After Macao successfully staged the PATA Annual Conference in 2005, the PATA Annual Meeting in 2009, as well as the PATA Travel Mart in 2010 and 2017, it is with great enthusiasm that we welcome all of you to the PATA Annual Summit this year. The event offers an invaluable opportunity to provide delegates with an update about the new dynamic of Macao as a world center of tourism and leisure after the pandemic,” she added.

At his opening remarks, PATA Chair Peter Semone, noted: “the Macao Government Tourism Office has been one of our most valuable partners, having been a member of the Association since 1958.” Pointing out that, “this year event only reaffirms our enduring partnership and collaboration in promoting the responsible and sustainable development of travel and tourism in the Asia pacific region and beyond. As we convene in this remarkable setting of the Grand Lisboa Palace Resort, amidst the vibrant energy of Macao, we are reminded of the transformative power of tourism to connect cultures, foster economic prosperity, and promote cross-cultural understanding.” 

Tourism heads discuss tourism trends in the Asia Pacific 

Featuring more than 40 speakers from Macao and across the world, the conference will present over 20 sessions until tomorrow. 

The highlight sessions after the opening ceremony included two panel discussions on “Marketing and Branding in Asia Pacific Tourism” and “Future-Proofing Travel and Tourism Policies”, moderated by BBC News and featuring tourism heads from eight destinations, including MGTO Director, Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, who joined the first one. The Economist Impact also presented an overview of the global economic landscape and its implications for the tourism sector for the next two years, among other sessions. 

Youth Symposium and China Dialogue in the morning

This morning, PATA Youth Symposium 2024 was hosted by the Macau University of Science and Technology, gathering PATA Student Chapter members from abroad and tourism students from the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area for panel discussions with industry leaders, mentorship sessions, and more for future tourism professionals. 

A special session, PATA – World Tourism Cities Federation China Dialogue, was also held in the morning, with presentations and discussions zooming in on the challenges and opportunities in the Mainland China inbound market as well as in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area inter-regional tourism development.

Discussions on “Reimagining Tourism” continue tomorrow

The top sessions of the conference for tomorrow include a “Conversation with Pansy Ho”, with PATA Chair Peter Semone, interviewing the Executive Chairman and Managing Director of Shun Tak Holdings Limited. Euromonitor International will present “Key Travel and Tourism Trends to Watch”, while PATA will unveil a report on human capital development, and Visa will provide a closing keynote on the future of travel and tourism. 

Other sessions will focus on topics ranging from hotel and air travel trends to travel technology and artificial intelligence, gastronomy tourism, educational tourism, nighttime economy, tourism synergies to diversify the economy, and more featuring experts from the World Travel and Tourism Council, Macao University of Tourism, Mastercard, Booking .com, Tripadvisor, Wynn Macau, among many others.

PATA as an international platform for Macao tourism industry

Organized in a different destination each year, the summit is one of the highlight annual events of PATA. This year’s summit is hosted by MGTO and co-hosted by SJM Resorts, S.A., is the first major PATA event held in Macao after the pandemic, allowing to showcase the destination’s potential as an international exchange platform and helping to promote Macao globally.

MGTO has been a PATA member since 1958. PATA Macau Chapter has 51 members from the local tourism industry. Founded in 1951, with headquarters in Bangkok, Thailand, PATA is a non-profit membership association dedicated to building responsible development of the Asia-Pacific travel and tourism industry, with its members comprising government tourism bodies, international airlines and airports, hospitality organisations, and educational institutions across the world. 

More information and updates about the PATA Annual Summit 2024 are available at the event webpage: www.PATA.org/pata-annual-summit-2024. 

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