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New Economic Perspectives for the Travel and Retail Industry

TFWA President highlights reasons to be optimistic despite challenges

During the 26th TFWA Asia-Pacific Exhibition and Conference, TFWA President Erik Juul-Mortensen shared his optimism about the future of the travel and retail industry. Despite the economic and geopolitical challenges that exist, Juul-Mortensen emphasized that there are many reasons to remain confident.

"We have all gone through difficult times in the past years, but we are thrilled to be back in Singapore to gather the industry for this major regional summit. I would like to express my gratitude to all the participants who made the effort to travel from near and far to be present," Juul-Mortensen stated.

The TFWA President also acknowledged the progress made in the recovery of the travel and retail sector while highlighting the remaining obstacles. "We need to exercise patience as the full recovery of passenger traffic will take time. Airlines need to regain financial stability and adapt to the growing passenger demand. Additionally, airfares remain high, and the health situation still poses challenges for incoming travelers to certain destinations," he explained.

Despite these challenges, Juul-Mortensen underscored the importance of adaptability for the travel and retail industry. "We need to be flexible and responsive to changes in consumer and traveler behavior. Today's travelers are seeking personalized experiences that blend the digital and in-store experience. By combining these two aspects, we can create unique experiences that meet travelers' expectations," he added.

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The TFWA President also highlighted the ongoing recovery in the Asia-Pacific region, particularly due to the lifting of restrictions in China. "The recovery is underway, with increased passenger traffic and travelers resuming their purchases. The lifting of travel restrictions for Chinese citizens has had a positive impact, and Asian destinations are already benefiting. We anticipate that long-haul travel will also resume on a large scale," he stated.

Juul-Mortensen concluded his speech by emphasizing the importance of not overlooking the emerging forces in the region, such as India. "India is a growing market with a young population and expanding economy. Indian airports are rapidly developing, and the emerging middle-class's duty-free shopping inclination offers significant opportunities. It is crucial to support emerging markets and create business-friendly environments to foster their development," he concluded.

The 26th TFWA Asia-Pacific Exhibition and Conference will continue until June 5, providing a platform for sharing best practices and exploring opportunities in the travel and retail industry.

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