Sharjah hospitality sector revenues now worth AED372 million; grows 7.8 per cent during 2017

SHARJAH — Sharjah’s hospitality sector witnessed a remarkable 7.8 percent increase in revenue during the first half of 2017 compared to the previous year, with its value reaching AED372 million, the Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, SCTDA, announced.

The announcement comes as the emirate steadily positions itself as the destination of choice for local, regional, and international tourists.

The SCTDA reported a massive 70 percent occupancy rate from January to June this year. The total number of guests for the first half of the year reached 885,000, representing a 3.5 percent increase versus the same period in 2016. Saudi nationals occupied many of the local hotels’ lists of top guests. During the first two quarters of the year alone, hotels welcomed at least 72,000 Saudi travellers.

Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman of the SCTDA, said, “The remarkable expansion in the occupancy rate is the result of the Sharjah Government’s intensive efforts to attract local, regional, and global tourists as part of its comprehensive and ambitious socio-economic development plan. Our ultimate goal is to draw 10 million visitors a year by 2021, a grand accomplishment that will help accelerate the emirate’s unprecedented growth in the 21st century. To achieve this end, we will launch forward-thinking initiatives, bold projects and campaigns, as well as maximise all our assets and resources to place Sharjah, the UAE’s cultural capital, on the global tourism map and enhance its brand and profile on the international stage.”

According to Al Midfa, part of the strategic plan for this year is to sustain the high tourist arrivals from Saudi Arabia. The SCTDA has set into motion a number of road shows covering major cities in the country to highlight Sharjah’s popular tourist attractions and showcase its identity and rich traditions that have remained intact even in today’s modern times.

Sharjah, an ideal family-friendly destination, is rapidly emerging as one of the popular culture and leisure destinations in the UAE and the rest of the region. It boasts a wide array of exciting activities, attractive beaches, museums, wildlife, public parks, and a host of Arabic attractions such as the Al Majaz Waterfront, Al Qasba, the Mleiha Archaeological Centre and the Al Noor Mosque, among others.

Source: Emirates News Agency