Dubai Business Events, the city’s official convention bureau and a division of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing, recognized members of its prestigious Al Safeer Congress Ambassador Program for their stellar contribution in attracting international meetings and conferences to the city. Awards were presented to 22 member organizations at the Programme’s annual appreciation ceremony, which was held Feb. 27 at the InterContinental Dubai Festival City. Over 200 ambassadors attended the awards event, including doctors, scientists, industry experts, business leaders and government officials from across the city, all of whom are playing an impactful role in defining Dubai as both a knowledge hub and a leading business events destination.

Helal Saeed Almarri, director general of Dubai Tourism, presented the ambassadors with their trophies at the awards, which are now in their fifth year. In 2018, the Al Safeer Congress Ambassador Program supported in securing 31 international association conferences that are set to be hosted in Dubai, which represent 65 percent of the association conferences awarded to the city over the course of the year. The events won are set to attract more than 39,500 industry-specific professionals and experts to Dubai from around the world. In total, the city is gearing up to host 51 ambassador-assisted events in 2019 and beyond, with some 71,000 delegates expected to attend.

Issam Kazim, chief executive officer of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing, says, “We would like to congratulate and thank all the ambassadors for their hard work and commitment to support the city in securing leading international business events. The work done through the Al Safeer Congress Ambassador Program is helping Dubai accelerate on its journey towards becoming a global knowledge hub and the efforts made by the ambassadors have contributed significantly to the city’s vision and strengthened its ability to attract international conferences to the region. Since the formation of the program, we have seen growing interest from potential ambassadors and trust that the ever-expanding network will continue to flourish and drive our city forward as a premier host for business events. The program is emblematic of the collaborative approach taken and the ability of stakeholders in the public and private sectors to come together to drive benefits for Dubai.”

Among the guest speakers at the event was Ali Sebaa Al Marri from Mohammed bin Rashid School of Government, who shared how the school was successful in winning the bid for the Sixth Global Symposium on Health Systems Research in 2020, as well as Abdulqader Obaid Ali, chief executive officer of the UAE Internal Auditors Association, who presented a case study on Dubai’s hosting of the Institute of Internal Auditors’ International Conference in 2018.

Steen Jakobsen, assistant vice president of Dubai Business Events, says, “The sharing of industry-specific knowledge and expertise across various sectors through the Al Safeer Program’s network of ambassadors has strengthened our bids for key industry events, convincing decision makers to choose Dubai as their host city. As Dubai’s strongest advocates within their individual fields and expertise, the ambassadors have contributed in enriching Dubai’s reputation as a global knowledge hub and the leading business events destination in the region. As we continue to develop the program, we welcome interest from potential ambassadors and look forward to collaborating with them to bring more business events to Dubai.”

Since being established in 2010, the Al Safeer Program has grown to become a strong network of over 300 members, each of whom are industry experts in their field and are helping steer Dubai’s position as a business platform that provides world-class infrastructure to support new industry discoveries and progression. In 2018, the program was strengthened through the signing of several memorandums of understanding, with members joining from the Dubai Culture and Arts Authority, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, Dubai Municipality, Dubai Police, Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government, RIT University in Dubai, and the UAE Financial Markets Association. The Al Safeer Congress Ambassadors community is set to further grow in 2019 as the program continues to target government entities, key universities and other organizations in Dubai to join and support in the city’s success.

Translating to “The Ambassador,” the Al Safeer Program was established by Dubai Business Events in 2010 to engage with UAE-based key opinion leaders and government representatives, tapping into their expertise and professional networks to attract international business events to Dubai. Since its establishment, the program has assisted in successfully bidding for a total of 146 events with over 207,000 delegates in attendance.

Dubai Business Events aims to further develop and increase Dubai’s share of the international business events market in order to grow economic development, jobs and knowledge creation in the emirate. DBE’s main goal, as a division of Dubai Tourism, is to establish the Emirate as a premier business event destination by helping organizers of international meetings, incentives, congresses and exhibitions plan and manage every aspect of their event. As a member of BestCities Global Alliance DBE aim to deliver the world’s best service experience for the meeting industry.

With the ultimate vision of positioning Dubai as the world’s leading tourism destination and commercial hub, Dubai Tourism’s mission is to increase the awareness of Dubai among global audiences and to attract tourists and inward investment into the emirate. Dubai Tourism is the principal authority for the planning, supervision, development and marketing of Dubai’s tourism sector. It markets and promotes the Emirate’s commerce sector, and is responsible for the licensing and classification of all tourism services, including hotels, tour operators and travel agents. Brands and departments within the Dubai Tourism portfolio include Dubai Business Events, Dubai Calendar, and Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment. For more info, visit www.dubaitourism.ae.

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