Organiser, Akwaaba African Travel Market, Mr. Ikechi Uko

The Top 100 Hotels in Nigeria by room numbers will be profiled and honoured at the 17th Akwaaba African Travel Market. Hospitality and tour operations were the biggest victims of the Covid19 pandemic lockdowns across the world. This was more so in Nigeria as the economy took a hit and went into the 2nd depression in 6 years. There is a need to re-energize the market and bring the industry back to life. This is the reason the organizers of Akwaaba have chosen to recognize the big hotels in Nigeria hoping to connect them to the tour operators in other to create a needed synergy that will renew the leisure economy.

In a statement by the organizers they gave reasons why delegates should attend the 17th edition of Akwaaba African Travel Market that will be taking place at Eko Hotel & Suites on the November 29th and 30th 2021. Akwaaba 2021 pledges to: Reconnect delegates with the industry’s leading Players and join forces to get Tourism back to its feet.

It will help delegates Discover new destinations in Nigeria at the Naija7Wonders presentations. The event will serve as a venue for the unveiling of the shortlist for the 7 Natural Wonders of Nigeria. The search for the Seven Wonders of Nigeria was launched last year to draw attention to the tourism attractions in Nigeria. A committee was put together by the organizers of Naija7Wonders to handle the search. The committee is made of 150 Top tourism practitioners in Nigeria who are all members of the elite group of Tourism 100 Club. They have shortlisted 35 destinations for the public to choose from and the winners will be announced at Akwaaba. Delegates will meet new suppliers and solutions that will help the firms emerge more efficient and gain long-term competitive advantage.

Delegates will Learn about trends and new market developments presented by industry experts with Q&A sessions through the M.I.C.E training and Tourism Specialist Certificate Course. Because of the effect of the Covid19 pandemic, Akwaaba is dedicating this year’s event to hospitality and the leisure economy and their capacity to heal.

There will be trainings on M.I.C.E and a Specialist Certificate course on Tourism in Nigeria. There will be discussions and panels on hospitality and standardization in Nigeria. Delegates will Meet a wide range of champions from Nigeria and beyond – in person and in a safe environment.

Delegates will Utilize the close connections and partnerships with industry representatives and organizations from all over Nigeria to further extend their business network. Akwaaba has over the years become the meeting place for travel and tourism professionals in Africa.  It has drawn attendance from over 20 nations. Many VIPs have graced the event in the past including former President Olusegun Obasanjo, former President of The Gambia Late Dawda Jawara, the former Vice President of Nigeria Late Alex Ekwueme, the former Secretary General of the Commonwealth of Nations Sir Emeka Anyaoku, the former Governor of Lagos State Senator Ahmed Bola Tinubu, former Governor of Cross River State Senator Liyel Imoke and Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State. Serving ministers of tourism from Ghana, Gambia, Uganda, Zimbabwe and Seychelles have all attended past editions of Akwaaba. The current President of South African Football Dr. Danny Jordaan had made a presentation at Akwaaba.

Leading hotels, airlines and destinations including Dubai, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, Egypt, Kenya, Gambia, Benin, Namibia, Sao Tome and Principe, Libya, USA, Spain and the Caribbean Tourism Organization (UK) had all participated in the African Travel Market.
Akwaaba had been so successful that it started another event in Ghana, the Accra Weizo which has been held in Accra for 5 years consecutively.

The 2-day event will draw on experts from Africa and Nigeria to expose and dissect relevant topics at the event. The exhibition will run for 2 days at Eko Hotel Convention Centre from the 29th of November to the 30th.

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