Qatar Tourism Authority (QTA) and United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) THEMIS Foundation are conducting a regional workshop titled ‘Strategy in Tourism Destination’.

The program, which commenced on Sunday 11 May 2014, is set to train 39 participants from Qatar and the MENA region on the key skills needed for building successful destination tourism strategies. The workshop is taking place at the Al Mirqab Souq Waqif Boutique Hotel in Doha, and will run until Thursday 15 May 2014. The training programme is part of the second phase of a cooperation agreement between QTA and the UNWTO, signed in February 2014.

Director of Strategy Development and the Head of the Tourism Industry Development Committee at QTA, Hassan Al-Ibrahim, said:

Developing the tourism human capital in Qatar is one of the key pillars of the Qatar National Tourism Sector Strategy 2030, with QTA having already taken concrete steps towards that direction by partnering with leading organizations such as the UNWTO…As drivers of sustainable development, we realize the importance of human progress as fundamental for sustaining a prosperous society and making sure that all our practices and strategies contribute to the country’s growth and prosperity.’

In addition to providing participants with the essential knowledge, skills, and tools, this week-long training workshop will also host a discussion forum on the matters surrounding destination tourism strategies. Senior representatives of the UNWTO as well as tourism professionals are leading the sessions, emphasizing situational analysis, strategic planning models, and tourism development strategy. The workshop will also include excursions to existing and potential touristic destinations to study it and assess the potential for growth. The participants will be presenting their proposals on the final day of the workshop to a panel, which includes representatives from QTA and the UNWTO.

The workshop is hosting lecturers and participants from Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Oman, Morocco, Yemen, Sudan, Nigeria and the UNWTO. Local lecturers and participants are members of Qatar Museum Authority (QMA), the Qatar Olympic Committee (QOC), Katara, Qatari destination management companies and tour operators, and QTA.

Participants have applauded Qatar Tourism Authority’s collaborative approach in working with stakeholders from the local tourism and hospitality industry and providing them with visibility into future plans through this workshop, which will give them the opportunity to hear and see, first-hand, the Qatar National Tourism Sector Strategy 2030 in practice.

Executive Director of UNWTO.Themis Foundation, Omar Valdez, said:

One of the ​fastest and most sustainable ways of helping UNWTO Member States to improve their competitiveness is through education and training. With this regional course, QTA has promptly addressed the training needs of the main stakeholders in the country, as well as opening it to other representatives from the MENA Region,  thus making this training activity an international forum for discussion and exchange of knowledge and experiences.’

One of the main priority areas of the Qatar National Tourism Sector Strategy 2030 is human capital development. QTA has already made strides towards the goal of developing human capital in tourism, co-founding Josoor Institute and forging strategic partnerships with the UNWTO and Stenden University Qatar toward that goal.

Central to the continued growth of Qatar’s tourism sector is the collaboration with private and public-sector stakeholders to achieve the objectives of the Qatar National Tourism Sector Strategy 2030. Through a myriad of events, promotions and partnerships, QTA and such stakeholders are working to deliver value for the benefit of the entire industry – value that contributes to the sustainability and maturity of the tourism sector in Qatar.