JNTO highlights tourism and MICE goals at VJTM 2015

vjtm 2015

JNTO highlights tourism and MICE goals at VJTM 2015

Over the last two days, both the Japan Association of Travel Agents (JATA) Tourism EXPO Japan 2015 and the Visit Japan Travel and MICE Mart (VJTM) 2015 have been taking place in Tokyo as part of Japan Travel Week.

On Friday, the opening day of both events, Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO) executives shared insights into trends and goals relating to Japan’s inbound tourism and MICE market.

JNTO executive director, Overseas Promotion Department, Mr Shuichi Kameyama revealed the Japanese Government’s goals for Japan-bound tourism.

JNTO executive director, Overseas Promotion Department, Mr Shuichi Kameyama

JNTO executive director, Overseas Promotion Department, Mr Shuichi Kameyama

The overarching goal is for Japan to reach 20 million foreign visitors by 2020 and, on the same year, reach a total foreign visitor spend of four trillion yen (approximately US$33.3 billion).

Through the government’s 2015 Action Program, a number of strategic initiatives have been formed in order to create “a new era of inbound tourism”.

Mr Kameyama said the first initiative is to disperse foreign visitors beyond the usual tourist hot spots of Tokyo, Mount Fuji and Kansai.

“Our main route, from Tokyo to Osaka, accounts for 65% [of foreign overnight guests] and most prefectures in other regions receive only a small fraction of overseas visitors,” Mr Kameyama said.

“We need to disperse them to all over Japan.”

vjtm 2015Other strategic initiatives include promoting shoulder and off-peak seasons, promoting visits to Japan to younger generations and increasing promotion in Europe and North America.

JNTO executive director, Japan Convention Bureau, Katsuaki Suzuki addressed the government’s plans for MICE promotion and its goal for Japan to become a tourism-oriented country.

The three main goals are to:

  1. attract MICE to local cities including more medium sized events,
  2. attract more international conferences, and
  3. attract incentive travels from key markets.

Mr Suzuki concluded his presentation by emphasising JNTO’s rebranded MICE concept that launched earlier this year.

“To highlight Japan’s advantage as an exciting and innovative meetings and events destination, we are adopting the new tagline: new ideas start here,” Mr Suzuki said.

“With this tagline we intended to convey the message that coming to Japan brings visitors into contact with the imagination and intelligence of Japan’s people and culture.”

The VJTM 2015 finishes today after another full day of business meetings and networking sessions.

Source = ETB Travel News: Brittney Levinson

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