The Samoa Tourism Exchange (STE) 2016 continues to be a successful event since it was initiated in 2008. In a special year for Samoa being the Visit Samoa Year 2016, a record number of influential travel trade and media representatives from as close as American Samoa and Fiji, and as far as the United Kingdom and China attended this year. Guided by the theme ‘Beautiful Samoa’, the Minister of Tourism, Hon. Lautafi Fio Selafi Purcell is positive that the future of Samoa tourism gets brighter, as he welcomed everyone during the official opening of this international event.
“This year, a record 59 Travel Trade representatives with vested interest in Samoa’s tourism products registered from across New Zealand, Australia, the UK Europe, USA, Canada, China, South Korea, Fiji and American Samoa.” Said Lautafi.
Since 2011, this event has become the annual dedicated business-to-business event for the travel and hospitality industry, which has expanded to become one of the major tourism exchange in the South Pacific region, and an opportune event for Samoa’s growing tourism industry to discuss and enhance business partnerships with key overseas travel trade and media.”
In its ninth year, this gathering of global travel industry chiefs was officially opened with a reception ceremony on the 12th of April at the Samoa Cultural Village, with the Exhibition itself from the 13th to the 14th of April at the Samoa Conference Center.
The record number of buyers who attended were thanked by the Minister in the event’s closing ceremony at the Sheraton Samoa Aggie Grey’s Resort and were welcomed back to Samoa by the Minister for next year’s event.
“We thank all our STE 2016 Buyers and Sellers for ensuring the success of this event through the partnerships established, and the coordination and sponsorship of our Tourism Stakeholders.” Said the Minister.
“We trust that you have had a most productive time in our country, and have also had the opportunity to visit most of what makes our Beautiful Samoa a unique destination to visit and enjoy.” He added.
Before the Exhibition, VIPs arrived for a tour of Upolu and Savaii Islands, before they were joined by the luminaries of the travel industry for the Exchange.