ITB Berlin, the world’s biggest tourism fair, took place in Berlin in March. There were almost 11,000 companies from 184 countries and territories, presenting their tourism attractions on a 160,000 square meters exhibition area. The range of stand holders and exhibitors was wide and included service providers such as hotels and airlines, as well as national and regional tourist boards and tour operators.
The expo was a wonderful opportunity to present a country as a tourism destination. For example, Saeed Al Naboudah, Chief Executive of Dubai Shopping Festival said that "The ITB provides us a large platform to market our events and attractions and helps promote them to an international audience".
Dr Christian Göke, chief operating officer of Messe Berlin, added: "The ITB Berlin not only claims to reflect the current state of this sector, but with the world"s largest convention for the industry, it also shows the rapid pace of change in this field". The show also demonstrates new trends and marks future developments: "It helps to identify strategies for constantly changing consumer demand." The number of exhibitors at the ITB Berlin is steadily growing. There were several new participants in ITB Berlin 2007, for example, Sierra Leone, Eritrea, Burkina Faso, Senegal, Niger and Benin. India was the partner country at the expo for this year. The country`s exhibition spreads across 30,000 square meters in its own hall. The Indian Pavilion hosted 100 co-participants including Kerala state, which is billed as "God"s Own Country".
Next year there will be a new specialist exhibition and convention staged in Singapore.