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Wednesday 12th February 2020

Location : Arab British Chamber of Commerce 43 Upper Grosvenor Street, London W1K 2NJ

The Arab British Chamber of Commerce will be hosting this unique event to discuss and explore Travel and Tourism in the Arab World.

Throughout the Arab World, Travel and Tourism (T&T) prioritization is an increasingly important component of national strategies for economic growth, diversification and development.

Trends in the global economy are redefining tourism and opening up new markets and opportunities for international business and leisure-seekers to exploit. A more demand-led T&T has seen the emergence of new forms of tourism such as eco-tourism, health-tourism and digital tourism. Shifts in consumer tastes mean that the traditional hotel and hospitality industries must compete with new boutique and platform services such as Airbnb.

The event will discuss opportunities for bilateral UK-Arab investment and cooperation in the T&T sector, to explore trends in the broader T&T industry, to uncover new opportunities, and to promote the development of Arab markets as leading (air)ports of call for the world’s increasingly mobile business travellers and leisure-seekers. 



HE Mr Ibrahim F Mohieldeen, Ambassador for the League of Arab States in London (Keynote Speaker)


Miranda Brown, Market Intelligence Consultant for Asia, Visit Britain

Miranda Brown is the Market Intelligence Consultant for Asia at Visit Britain. In her role, she shares her expertise in data and insights on inbound tourism to the UK from Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Africa, working closely with other Market Intelligence Consultants in the Research and Forecasting team. An experienced researcher, Miranda came to Visit Britain from market research agencies where she worked with global brands to build a broad understanding of consumer trends and motivations.



Nigel David, Regional Director for APAC & Middle East, The World Travel & Tourism Council

Nigel David is Regional Director for APAC & Middle East, for WTTC where he has worked for 7 years. Nigel graduated from Birmingham University in 1982 with a degree in International Studies. He followed that with a postgraduate degree in Tourism and Marketing at Surrey University in 1983. His career has spanned over 35 years in the travel and tourism industry during which he has held a wide range of leadership roles for both large multi-national organisations as well as smaller start-up companies. His last role was 5 years as Chief Executive of eviivo culminating in the sale of eviivo to Investcorp Technology Partners. Prior to eviivo Nigel worked for Thomas Cook Group where he held Managing Director positions for both Thomas Cook and a subsidiary business, Style Villas. In his earlier career Nigel worked 14 years for Thomson Holidays in a range of Managing Director roles including Portland Direct, Lunn Poly and Group Managing Director for Thomson.


Mr Ryan Maxwell, Managing Director – Media & Marketing, EXTREME

Having joined EXTREME in 2014, Ryan’s responsibilities include overseeing the global operations, strategic planning and growth, across the entire marketing function. With a strong marketing and brand management background, Ryan has previous experience working for companies such as Hornby Hobbies Ltd. on multiple iconic brands including Airfix, Scalextric, Hornby and Pocher. Ryan graduated from Kent University with a degree in Business Administration with Marketing, and after early experience with Audi AG in Ingolstadt knew that marketing is where his true passion lied. Coupling this passion, and his love for action sports and the mountains, he has helped EXTREME evolve from a global TV network into the leading Destinations, Events, Media and Marketing business it is today.


Ms Debbie Flynn, founder of The Brighter Group, speaking on behalf of Jordanian Tourism Board

Debbie Flynn is the founder of The Brighter Group, a London based tourism PR and marketing specialist agency. Now part of Finn Partners, a global communications agency, she has been cited by the PR Week Power Book as ‘the well networked travel supremo.’ A key player in the industry, Debbie sits on the Global Tourism Resilience Council, the judging panel for the International Peace Through Tourism Awards and the advisory board of the Travel Media Awards. 

Debbie has had the pleasure of leading the Jordan Tourism Board’s UK & Ireland activity for the past 19 years as their official office in these markets. She has steered the destination through many a crisis, developed successful themes for attracting the UK consumers, has been an advocate for responsible tourism and instrumental in the return of easyJet flights into Aqaba. These efforts have led to significant market growth over the years and The Brighter Group is constantly seeking new opportunities to sustain this trend.


Mr Abdulla Ghanim Alghanim, Commercial Attache, Embassy of the State of Qatar

Abdulla Al-Ghanim is a trade negotiator specialising in free trade agreements and bilateral investment treaties. He is also a member of Qatar’s negotiation team, taking part in GCC-China FTA negotiations. In the past few years Abdulla led joint economic forums in different parts of the world including the US, Japan, France, and Turkey. Before he assumed his position as commercial attache, Abdulla headed the WTO Affairs Section in the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, at a critical time where Qatar was most active in the World Trade Organization. Abdulla Holds a LLM in International Commercial Law from the University of Reading.


Mr. Ralph Nehme, Economic attaché to the Lebanese Embassy in London

Mr. Nehme is an accomplished corporate finance executive with extensive expertise in multiple sectors namely: Telecom, Technology, Hospitality, Real Estate, Construction, Insurance, Oil & Gas, Aviation & Automotive.
Mr. Nehme lead and advised large conglomerates and corporations on financial transactions in both the private and public sectors. Mr. Nehme graduated from the American University in Beirut, Lebanon with a Bachelor of Business Administration and holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Southampton in the United Kingdom.


Mr. Khalid Hassan, Counselor, Embassy of the Republic of the Sudan

Khalid Hassan was born in Khartoum and joined Sudan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2004 as Third Secretary. He served at the ministry’s headquarters in the African and Asian departments until 2007. Between 2007 to 2012, Mr Hassan served as Second and First Secretary at the Sudan Embassy in Libya. He later served as Counsellor at the Sudan Embassy in Eritrea.
He took up his current post as Counsellor at the Sudan Embassy in London in 2019. Mr Hassan has undertaken postgraduate studies at the University of Oxford and his wide ranging interests in international relations led to his acquiring expertise in countries such as India, China, Russia, The Netherlands and Kenya.



Ms. Kathleen Curran, Area Director of Sales, UK, Ireland & Scandinavia, Rotana Hotels

Kathleen leads the Global Sales team based out of London for Rotana Hotels and Resorts which operates predominately 4 and 5 star hotels, alongside 3 star hotels and serviced apartments across all primary destinations in the Middle East, and select locations in Africa and Turkey.
The team is responsible for corporate travel, long stays, MICE and leisure; all segments where Rotana has significant experience, skill and presence. Rotana and Kathleen celebrate the Arabic culture with a special affection and pride.
Kathleen’s experience spans the US and UK for over 25 years having learned significantly with international chains, Hyatt and Hilton, alongside Club Quarters and Oakwood.


Ms Alison  Cryer, Managing Director, Representation Plus / First PR

Alison has 30+ years’ experience of international PR and marketing and more recently digital marketing and social media in the hotel, airline, tourism, leisure and lifestyle industries. Alison set-up Representation Plus, acquired CIB in 2003 and First Public Relations in 2012. Alison was previously Marketing Director worldwide for Copthorne Hotels, during which time she launched the Copthorne Brand and set up the hotel group's European sales and PR offices including France and Germany.

Her vast experience of brand development, the promotion of existing places and developing new locations has won awards such as the Travel Bulletin Award for top Middle East Tourist Board for Oman for 2 years running. She worked for the Sultanate of Oman Ministry of Tourism for 13 years, set-up the first Jordan Tourism Board UK office and has assisted Tunisia, Palestine and Egypt with a variety of PR projects and campaigns.


Ms Anna Hobbs, Account Manager, the Bahrain Tourism & Exhibitions Authority

Anna Hobbs is the Senior Account Manager leading the Sales & Marketing team for the Bahrain Tourism & Exhibitions Authority (BTEA) in the UK. Anna has worked on the Bahrain account since the UK office inception in October 2016. Anna has been active in introducing the UK trade and consumers to Bahrain as a leisure destination, growing the product on offer in the market and leading successful marketing campaigns, including ones to promote the Formula 1 Gulf Air Bahrain Grand Prix and also the 'Always Warmer' campaign which showcases the warmth of Bahrain, not just the climate, but also the people and rich culture.   


Mr Jamal Kilito, Director for the UK and Ireland in the Moroccan National Tourism Office

Jamal joined the Moroccan National Tourist Office nearly 20 years ago as advisor to the CEO. He has held positions in various departments of the organization, including serving as the International Markets Director for six years where he was responsible for negotiating and managing partnerships with airlines and tour operators. In his current role as director of the UK and Ireland regions for the Moroccan National Tourist Office, Jamal is responsible for conducting market research, long-term strategic marketing and brand management. Through his commitment to the tourism board of Morocco, Jamal has developed a deep level of knowledge in branding, and strategic and online marketing for the travel vertical.


Ms Meisoon Elshorafa, Political Counsellor, Palestinian Mission to the UK

Meisoon was educated at the University of Glasgow where she studied Psychology with English-Arabic/ Arabic-English Translation and the history of science. She was awarded a Bachelor of Science in Psychology B.Sc. (Honours) with Minor in English-Arabic/ Arabic-English Translation.
She later studied for an MA in Area Studies and gained an MA in Applied Linguistics and Translation from SOAS, University of London. 



8.45 – 9.15

Registration, coffee & networking

9.15 – 9.30

Opening and welcoming remarks

9.30 – 10.45 

Session 1 : Disrupting and developing markets

10.45 – 11.15

Coffee Break

11.15 – 12.15

Session 2 : Creating new linkages between the Arab World and the UK

12.15 - 12.30

Closing Remarks

12.30 onwards

Networking Lunch

Ticket Prices

Non Members : £25 (+VAT)

ABCC Members : £10 (+VAT)

If you a member and wish to register please contact our membership officer,  Dr Lamya Al-Imara T: +44(0) 207 659 4865 / E: Lamya@abcc.org.uk.

Sponsorship Opportunities

Get more information on the benefits of partnering with the ABCC. Download a copy of the brochure 

Download The Sponsorship Brochure 

For more details please contact:

Mr Rachid Kadouri T:+44(0) 207 659 4889 / E: Rachid@abcc.org.uk