MEADFA hails choice of Ghana for annual conference in November

AFRICA/MIDDLE EAST. The Middle East and Africa Duty Free Association (MEADFA) has said that Ghana “is an ideal location” for its annual conference, which takes place on 19-21 November at the Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City in Accra. MEADFA said that the West African country “serves as a gateway to Africa, home to some of the world’s fastest emerging economies, and a place of unique culture and tradition”.

This is the first time the annual event is being hosted in sub-Saharan Africa. The move to host the event in the region was flagged by TFWA – which manages the event – at the recent TFWA Asia Pacific Conference.

This year’s MEADFA Conference is hosted by Dufry, which has a significant presence in Africa with operations in several countries. The company said it was “proud to be undertaking this landmark event with our partners Ghana Tourism Development Company and the Government of Ghana”.

Ghana Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Hon. Dr. Ibrahim Mohammed Awal said: “As the first sub-Saharan African country to host the MEADFA Conference, Ghana is proud to play a leading role in promoting the growth and development of the travel retail industry in Africa. We are committed to creating an environment that supports and encourages the growth and success of businesses in Ghana, and we believe that the MEADFA Conference will provide a platform for our local businesses to connect with international players and explore new business opportunities.”

MEADFA President Sherif Toulan said: “The MEADFA Board and I are delighted to be able to bring the MEADFA Conference to West Africa for the first time. The tourism and travel retail industries in Ghana and neighbouring countries are developing rapidly, and we see it as our responsibility as an association to help our members and business partners to realise Africa’s potential. With that in mind, staging our annual event in Ghana is a logical step, and we encourage all our members and regular conference delegates to join us for what promises to be an excellent event in a fascinating location.”

Dufry General Manager Africa Isaias Diaz Garcia said: “We are honoured to be the official host of this year’s MEADFA Conference. We believe that Africa is an important market for the travel retail industry, and we are committed to supporting its growth and development. We look forward to welcoming our colleagues and working together to explore new opportunities and drive the industry forward.”

TFWA President Erik Juul-Mortensen said: “The MEADFA Conference is always a highlight of the duty free and travel retail industry calendar, and we’re pleased to continue our partnership with MEADFA and to support the association’s first event in sub-Saharan Africa. Delegates can expect a varied and engaging conference programme, excellent networking opportunities, and the chance to discover a host country with much to offer.”

Details of the programme and other practical information will follow. ✈

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