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Diverse travel products and high purchasing power define opening ITB Asia

Diverse travel products and high purchasing power define opening ITB Asia ( SINGAPORE – The much-anticipated inaugural ITB Asia travel trade show opened today in Singapore. The three-day, B2B event for the Asian travel market has attracted 651 exhibiting companies from 58 countries and territories. Exhibitors, including small- and medium-sized enterprises, will meet with 812 high-purchasing, power, travel buyers, 56% of them from Asia.

Up to 5,000 travel representatives including about 1,000 trade visitors and over 200 journalists will convene for three days of negotiations. Their deliberations will help drive the future of the leisure, meetings, and corporate travel sectors in Asia. The allocated 10,600 square meters of exhibition space in the Suntec Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre sold out three months ago.

ITB Asia is the Asian sister show of annual ITB Berlin, the world´s leading travel trade show. “ITB Asia is our first brand extension of ITB Berlin,” said Mr. Raimund Hosch, CEO of Messe Berlin, the event organizer. “ITB Asia is a very robust new travel trade show, and it has come at the right time,” he said.

Mr. Hosch said that the current global economic crisis may have added impetus and importance to the event. “The world’s travel professionals have turned out in force, despite, or even because of, economic uncertainties. Indeed, ITB Asia has turned into the perfect platform to discuss future paths, policies and plans, and prepare for the recovery to come,” he said.

The inaugural event has attracted 280 accommodation entities (43% of all exhibitors), 178 tour operator/travel agencies (27%), 81 government tourism organizations or associations (12%), 29 travel technology companies (4%), 26 transport/carrier companies (4%), 22 business travel/MICE service suppliers (3%), 12 consultancies (2%), 10 media exhibitors (2%), and 13 others (2%).

Of all exhibitors, 77% are from Asia Pacific, 8.2% from Europe, 5.2% from Africa, 4.5% from the Middle East, 3.7% from South America, and 1.4% from North America.

Singapore is the official partner country for ITB Asia. Mr. Lim Neo Chian, deputy chairman and chief executive, Singapore Tourism Board, said, “The overwhelming response from the international travel industry to the first edition of ITB Asia is testament to the Asian region's strong demand for leisure, business, and niche travel products.”

Exhibitors from every sector of the industry, including destinations, airlines and airports, hotels and resorts, theme parks and attractions, inbound tour operators, inbound destination management companies, cruise lines, spas, venues, meeting facilities, and travel technology companies are all in attendance at ITB Asia this week.

“Partners such as the Singapore Tourism Board, the Web in Travel technology event, and the Association of Corporate Travel Executives have made ITB Asia a compelling proposition with broad appeal,” said Dr. Martin Buck, director of Messe Berlin (Singapore). “I am optimistic that we will attract a total of about 5,000 travel representatives through our doors for the first ITB Asia.”

Read the full ITB Asia 2008 opening report at: under “Press Releases&News.”

Full program details are available at: under “Events.”

Press contacts: Messe Berlin Michael T. Hofer Director Press & Public Relations for the Messe Berlin group of companies ITB Asia and ITB Berlin: Press Officer Astrid Ehring Messedamm 22 D-14055 Berlin Tel: +4930 3038-2275 Fax: +4930 3038-2141 Email: ITB Asia PR Contact for the Asian Region: Ken Scott ScottAsia Communications Email: Tel: (+66) 2860 8227 For additional details:

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