National Tourism, Transportation Summit scale up with international flavour –

By: Will Olapard

Organizers of the flagship MICE platform have set a new pace for the six-year National Tourism and Transport Summit, which they see as reason to host a cross-sectoral event for key stakeholders to meet not only domestically and find areas of collaboration, but also to create an B2B.

According to Abiodun Odusanwo, President of the Nigerian Institute of Tourism Professionals (ITPN) and Chairman of the National Tourism and Transport Summit (NTTS) Organizing Committee, “Over the past six years, NTTS has played an important role in tourism and transport. Transport Value chain and fill the MICE gap for business with international stakeholders.

“In this regard, we are now seeing beyond the horizon that, as the world has become digitally connected to a global market scope, it will be seamless for summits and expos to have borderless participants because the events we speak of are global in nature Appearance.”

On whether a brand name was needed to make this happen, Odusanwo explained: “We actually thought about that. In fact, in one of the releases, I think it was the third or so, we suggested changing it to international because the actual In fact, tourism itself is international.

“Transportation in a broad sense, is international; but if we can name it Tourism and Transportation International Expo or International Tourism and Transportation Expo, we will have to think carefully, both names we have patents on.

“Although if you look at the number of events per year, it has now an international flavor. We have strong players from embassies and international organizations in Nigeria.

“What’s more, we’re focusing again on the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), which brings us the bigger picture of internationalizing the event. So we have a lot to think about looking at the band’s name. We’re known by our current title. Know, if anything not for this sixth

“In the fourth and fifth editions we looked at the AfCFTA, but this time we have now introduced trade, which was not covered in the previous editions.

“As we look at it now, what will drive the AfCFTA is inter-Africa trade, inter-African production and consumption, which will affect tourism and transport. Because we have been focusing on tourism and transport, we feel now that we cannot look at these two So the idea of ​​AfCFTA is to facilitate inter-African trade and it will now allow us to increase the attractiveness while we still focus on the tourism and transport side of it.

Odusanwo was optimistic about expanding the scope, scope and participants of the summit and expo, saying, “In fact, there are too many institutions that have been established to realize and implement the AfCFTA. What we are doing now is actually bringing in some of these countries and international agencies.

“Last year I visited the AfCFTA Secretariat in Accra and took the opportunity to invite the AfCTAA Secretary General. They will be coming this year. .

“We are also working on bringing in the African Development Bank (ADB) and bringing in more institutions within Africa so that they can make people aware of the role they are playing and their own mandate.

What we did also make sure we brought in different agencies and government agencies. What we also have to do is involve the African Union (AU) and institutions within the AU, this time with a higher degree of their involvement.

“We will also try to bring in some ECOWAS. Then we can see how further synergies can be built on top of existing discussions.

“What we’re also trying to do is do research and find out other forums where AfCTAA is being discussed, because we’re not the only ones looking at it.

We start with travel and transportation.

“There are other aspects of trade and industry, looking at different aspects of it. We will think about how to invite them to participate so that the results of their deliberations at different times can now play a role, because we cannot.”

Looking back at events and turnout in times of the pandemic and how NTTS has stabilized strategically, the ITP Chairman said the past few years have been generally interesting in the world. “We had COVID 19, we had other things, but we never canceled any editions. What we’re going to do this year is do a rundown of the first five editions. We want to put together and see what’s actually been discussed and the impact these events have had .

“Last time, apart from the private sector, we had 34 MDAs in the Inter-Ministerial Organisation’s Committee. Apart from that, what this has done for us is that we now have liaisons from these MDAs who will see how they are now implementing Results, especially when it affects their own institutions.

“So, that’s how we can now start to see the outcomes of these kinds of summits being implemented. We’ve been so successful that for some MDAs, they now include the summit as one of their annual events listed.

“I believe it’s contained in the budget of one or two agencies. We’ve built mutual understanding with some agencies over the years so we have some liaisons to network and discuss.

“Through this summit, we have now become a key stakeholder for many other agencies, aviation, transport, engineering and other sectors. When they organize their programs now, they invite us as a key stakeholder. Without the summit, This is not going to happen.

“Before the summit, people saw travel as a distant industry that may or may not have had much to do with them. However, thanks to this summit, we made travel visible to so many organisations, agencies and agencies The relevance, not only of the economy, but as an industry with multiple values, how it can bring about marginal changes in the lives of business owners. Chain sectors play different roles.

“The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), for example, used to think they had nothing to do with tourism. Now they can see their relevance to tourism. Ditto for Shanghai Customs.

“As far as they’re concerned, they’re just looking into what’s coming in and now they’ve got a little more understanding of the tourism industry. An interesting example is the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS), they’ve been very active.

“Through the summit, they now have a better understanding of why they are important to the tourism industry. How their partnership with the tourism industry will benefit them and even help them in their mission.

“First, to control immigration, you need to work with those who own establishments like hotels, where most of the immigrants live. So, there needs to be collaboration. Even then, they are there to facilitate movement among Nigerians. If they don’t encourage “People move, they have less work to do. They also need to make sure they don’t stop legitimate travelers from entering the country.”

“They’ve realized now that to really scale up, they need to work with the travel industry. Number two, the last one we did, and it’s actually happening now, they say, ‘Listen, whenever you have this your major At events, we’ll give you a table, or someone will welcome your international visitors.’”

“So, those are some of the benefits of the summit. Yes, some of the outcomes of the communiqué will take a long time to implement, but as we go slowly and incrementally, we will get there.”

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