The Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) should establish an office in the southeastern Brazilian city of São Paulo, with the objective of promoting, in Brazil, tourist activity in the emirate. The information was given yesterday, July 16, the mission manager at the organization, Hamad Mohammed bin Mejren, who is currently in the city of Rio de Janeiro (Southeast).
"This is a possibility that should come true soon. I regard the city of São Paulo as the most important in South America, business-wise," Mejren said. According to him, the office will help promote events in Brazil focusing on Dubai tourism.
"We should send some officials from the department here as well. This should take place in a short while, because this part of the world is very interesting for us," he said.
In addition to the establishment of the office, the interest is revealed by the production of a video, in Portuguese language, about the emirate. The video is presented by the Brazilian actress Mel Lisboa, and showcases some of the main tourist spots in Dubai, such as the Burj Al Arab Hotel, shopping malls, beaches, and high-end residential and commercial complexes. According to Mejren, the channels to air the video have not been defined yet.
Mejren, who opened up the doors of his Copacabana Palace Hotel suite to the press yesterday, gave a presentation on the emirate's growth in recent years. According to him, the rise in tourist volume in Dubai is such that the international airport is having its passenger capacity increased from 30 million to 70 million. Last year, the emirate received 6.4 million tourists, mostly from the United Kingdom, Saudi Arabia, Russia, and Germany.
According to him, tourism accounts for 33% of the economy of Dubai. The emirate is home to people from more than 180 different nationalities, totaling 1.4 million inhabitants, of which only 18% are actual Dubai natives. "Dubai is located in a strategic position, both for trade and for tourism," Mejren stated.
To have an idea of the rapid growth in passenger traffic at the airports, in 1980 the airport received 5 million people, a figure that rose to 29 million last year. According to Mejren, there are currently 303 hotels in the emirate, totaling 40,000 rooms. This figure is expected to increase to 65,000 rooms within two years.
The main projects under construction in Dubai, listed by Mejren, include The Palm, a residential, commercial, and hotel complex featuring 28 hotels, shaped as a palm tree; The World, comprised of 300 islands which, together, have the shape of the world map; the Dubai Marina, which will include 110 residential and commercial buildings, and a marina; and the Burj Dubai, which should be the world's tallest building, at 800 meters of height, and approximately 200 floors. Mejren also mentioned the construction of two subway lines, which should be concluded in 2009.
The Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing invests millions per year. In the field of event promotion alone, the department spends approximately US$ 30 million. Mejren, who should return to Dubai next Wednesday (18), will have a meeting today with representatives of the Federation of Industries of the State of Rio de Janeiro (Firjan), with whom he will discuss the possibility of taking a business mission from the state to Dubai next year.
São Paulo Tourism
Tourism in the capital of the southeastern Brazilian state of São Paulo has recorded, in the first five months of this year, a turnover 18% higher than that of the same period in 2006. The turnover can be perceived by looking at the collection of the Tax on Services (ISS) for hotel activity, tourist packages, and events promoted by the São Paulo City Hall, which has reached 45.542 million reais (US$ 24.3 million) from January until May this year.
"The data clearly reveal how tourist activity benefits the city and, more specifically, how the economy responds quickly and effectively to a development policy for a sector that involves no less than 52 different segments of the economy," claims Caio Luiz de Carvalho, president of São Paulo Turismo (SPTuris), a company for tourist promotion and events in the city.