Dubai, United Arab Emirates – A large-scale international event in the field of business tourism Meet Global MICE Congress took place in Moscow from 6 to 8 October, attracting over 300 industry experts from 14 countries, including Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, India, and China. This influential gathering served as a pivotal platform for MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions) tourism discussions. The congress featured enlightening business sessions, discussions, debates, and B2B negotiations.
Topics ranged from the essential qualities cities must possess to attract business tourists to key considerations for this segment and the industry’s promising future. Business tourism is vital for Moscow, contributing one-fifth of its total tourist influx. Non-CIS countries leading the tourist arrivals included China, Iran, UAE, Turkey, and India. The UAE ranked fifth in the share of foreign tourists staying in Moscow hotels this summer.
Evgeny Kozlov, Chairman of the Moscow City Tourism Committee, highlighted that, “Moscow is a business center, which has all the infrastructure required for hosting international business events. In the first half of 2023, two million business tourists visited the capital – this is 10% more than in the same period of last year. The segment of business travel has not only fully recovered to pre-Covid levels, but has also surpassed them.”
To enhance its appeal further, Moscow has adopted a multifaceted approach to attract tourists. The Moscow City Tourism Committee has placed substantial emphasis on promoting business tourism, collaborating closely with travel agencies to ensure a steady influx of tourists to the city.
“From the very beginning, our journey to Moscow has been excellent. The city’s infrastructure, innovation and technological sophistication are amazing. Especially worth noting is the possibility of obtaining an e-visa for citizens of many countries. The process takes only a few days and eliminates complicated procedures with documents. Another advantage is the direct flight connection between Moscow and Bahrain. In my opinion, tourists from Bahrain will be very attracted to Moscow in winter time, as well as to the space centre, which shows Russia’s rich past in the field of cosmonautics,” shared Deepak Janardanan, General Manager of Akbar Holidays.
Russia introduced e-visas for citizens of 55 countries, including Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Iran, and Kuwait in August. Over 30,000 tourists utilized this streamlined process in its first month, offering a 60-day validity period and a 16-day stay option.
Moscow offers a wide range of services catering to business travelers, with 30 venues capable of accommodating over 40,000 attendees for large events. The city boasts 1.9 thousand hotels, 18.5 thousand cafes, and restaurants of various segments, ensuring comfort and convenience for visitors, with English signage at major locations.
The Meet Global MICE Congress in Moscow showcased the city’s commitment to fostering business tourism, its world-class infrastructure, and its appeal to international travelers. With a strong recovery in the business travel sector and streamlined visa processes, Moscow is poised to remain a top destination for MICE tourism in the Middle East and beyond.