The Jordan Inbound Tour Operators Association (JITOA) in cooperation with the CBI -Centre for the Promotion of Imports from Developing Countries in Netherlands supported JITOA active members of inbound Tour Operators to participate in the “Export Coaching Programme (ECP)” for tourism. CBI is an agency of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. Its objective is to assist companies from developing countries to achieve sustainable exports to Europe, through conducting a wide range of support programmes in different sectors.
European outbound tourism is still growing, however, many receptive companies miss the opportunities and fail to benefit of it. CBI offers companies for incoming tourism guidance and training to build contacts in a systematic and successful way in the various European generating markets.
JITOA members will get the opportunity to get the needed assistance and support to enter the European market. Within this tourism programme, CBI offers Jordan Tour Operators needed guidance and training to build contacts in a systematic and successful way in the various European generating markets. This is accomplished by carrying out sector-specific export programs that follow a step-by-step approach to increase market access and penetration. The programs are run by independent consultants whose extensive knowledge and networks throughout Europe guarantee high-quality, specialized and up-to date content.
JITOA took the initiative to involve the Jordan Inbound Tour Operators in the CBI specialized Export Coaching program, to boost business cooperation with Jordan and Europe, and help Tour Operators to develop and gain more business opportunities with Europe, and increase the Jordanian exports to Europe.
In April 2009, the CBI held a meeting in Barcelona with a number of Business Supporting Organizations (BSO), from different developing countries including Jordan. This meeting was set to open discussion between the CBI consultants and BSO’s of developing countries, to share their feedback on the business opportunities in Europe and identify the potential benefits for participating countries to enter the European markets. Mr. Nizar Al Adarbeh, JITOA CEO, attended the meeting representing the association and discussed the opportunities of partnering with the CBI to support its members. Later in July 2009, Jordan Inbound Tour Operators applied to the program, and met with the CBI consultant and discussed their eligibility through the cooperation and support of JITOA and the Jordan Business Development Center (BDC).
Six of JITOA active members were successfully selected to enter this program; Atlas Travel and Tourism Agency, Amani Tours, Dakkak Tours International, Jordan Select Tours, Royal Tours, United Travel Agency. Noting that one of JITOA staff will accompany the delegation from Jordan, represented by Mr. Mahmoud Al Arab – Membership officer. Participants will enroll in a 6 days training program in Rotterdam, Netherland which already started on the 2nd of March, 2010. 142 tourism professionals from 30 countries are joining this program including Jordan, and these are; Albania, Benin, Bolivia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Burkina Faso, Colombia, Ecuador, Ethiopia, Georgia, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Madagascar, Mali, Nepal , Nicaragua, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Uganda, Vietnam, Zambia. It’s worth mentioning that Jordan is the only country participating from the Arab region.
The program will prepare Tour Operators for successful entry on European tourism markets and get introduced to the various EU tourism markets and will be provided with special training in export marketing, management and promotion techniques relevant to these markets. The program will be carried out by 8 CBI Tourism Experts from 6 EU countries.
Participating companies in the CBI-ECP 2008-2014 will receive individual support over 3 years period by means of on-site consultancy, training schemes, market information, trade fair participation and business-to-business activities. They will also receive extensive information about each market during an Export Marketing Training and will be assisted by a CBI external expert with a long track record in the sector. Along with the CBI external expert, participants will be able to decide on the best options to enter the market. These could be: trade fair participations, one-to-one meetings with buyers, a road show or presentations to present your product. The programme is thus completely tailor-made to your company’s needs and whishes.
JITOA participation came out of the need to target emerging tourist markets in order to mitigate the impact of the global downturn in the sector.
Mr. Nizar Al Adarbeh, JITOA CEO said “participation in this program is part of our vital role in supporting our members to penetrate new markets projected through our mission to help develop new opportunities for the Jordan Inbound Tourism Sector through enhancing the quality of services and strengthening competitiveness of Jordan in the international marketplace.”
Participants will have the opportunity to utilize both their expertise and knowledge of the local market and that of CBI in Europe. They learn how to develop their capacities and customize their products according to the standards of European markets. Furthermore, they will be provided with information and export marketing strategies developed to help them penetrate European markets, and be able to successfully address the challenges to enter the EU market. Assistance also included helping these companies participate in some of the largest and most well-known international exhibitions in Europe through which they could reach potential buyers and be part of powerful networks.
JITOA will work on extending this cooperation to involve more Jordan Inbound Tour Operator members to benefit from the CBI supporting programs.