Under the big top at the Moroccan Travel Market


Marrakech is a town where 1001 Arabian Nights meets Palm Springs meets the Alps. Movie stars, celebrities, and ordinary tourists all soak up the sun, climb the mountains, and shop here in one of the world’s oldest marketplaces.

The city is also the home of the Moroccan Travel Market (MTM), the largest travel trade event in North Africa. Held earlier this month in perhaps the largest tented pavilion on the entire continent, the venue for MTM is, in true Berber fashion, built from the floor up each year. Once again, Marrakech and the MTM rolled out the red carpet to welcome travel buyers and sellers from around the world to this ancient medina. Now in its third edition, the Moroccan Travel Market (MTM) keeps growing with attendance this year up nearly a third over 2009.

MTM is held just around the corner from the famed Marrakech Kasbah, a world class destination featuring a major 24x7x365 event with an eclectic and vibrant mix of people, food, and adventure shopping. Travel buyers and sellers swarmed the laser-lit “big tops” to meet, network, learn, and share the latest information about travel and tourism offerings in North Africa and beyond.

Mr. Lamrani Mahdi, manager of PR and communications for the event, described reasons for the overwhelming success of the MTM: “Morocco is really a growing tourism market and ranks 31st among the most visited countries in the world and 2nd among all African countries. Actually, we created MTM because there was a big need for a show like this in the region. We wanted to create something that attracted travel and tourism professionals, both suppliers and buyers, bringing them together to do business and advance their initiatives. The event includes not only leisure, luxury, and business travel segments, but also a large sustainable tourism sector. As a result of all these factors, we are getting bigger and better every year. This year we are expecting 1,300 attendees up significantly from the one thousand we had last year.”

MTM features 30,000 square meters of exhibition space and creates direct approach opportunities with 600 international buyers. Participant registrations for the 2010 event were up as follows: 12 percent increase in exhibitors, 70 percent increase in hosted buyers, and a 25 percent growth in participating countries.

Sandy Dhuyvetter, executive producer and host of TravelTalkRADIO, described MTM as: “A unique variety of travel services and destinations and an incredible experience for us opening up our eyes to all the diverse offerings that Morocco and North Africa present. Exhibits, information, B2B networking, seminars, investments, infrastructure, MICE, education – anything you need to know about travel and tourism in Morocco and MENA for that matter is all right here.”

The 4th edition of the Moroccan Travel Market is scheduled to occur once again in Marrakech in January 2011.

To listen to the complete interview with Mr. Lamrani Mahdi, please go to: http://www.TravelTalkMEDIA.com/archives_jan24_10.html#1010 . For more on the Moroccan Travel Market, go to: www.MTM.ma .