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Fiji Set To Host 2010 Travel Writers Conference

By James Wilkinson in Bangkok

Fiji is set to host the 2010 Australian Society of Travel Writers (ASTW) Annual General Meeting, following last weekend’s (Aug 21) announcement it would be the only destination to bid for the yearly event, which attracts over 200 travel journalists and marketers.

ASTW 2010 AGM venue: Sofitel Fiji

The ASTW’s Annual General Meeting and Awards night will be held at the Sofitel Fiji Resort and Spa and will be followed by hosted pre- and post-tours to showcase Fiji as a destination.

The 2010 bid was unveiled at the 2009 ASTW AGM in Bangkok last Saturday, a conference and awards night – sponsored by Tourism Authority of Thailand and Thai Airways – that proved to be one of the most successful in the history of the Society.

Fiji’s tourism minister Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said the ASTW AGM, slated for November 2010, would significantly help the country’s tourism industry, particularly on the back of the hundreds of stories penned by the society’s journalists at the event each year.

“We see the opportunity to host the 2010 ASTW AGM as becoming a major component in helping us to achieve the targets set out in Tourism Fiji’s international marketing strategy,” Sayed-Khaiyum said.

“It goes without saying that this event and the opportunity it offers to host the biggest annual gathering of travel writers from our foremost source of international visitors represents a wonderful prospect for the local tourism industry and overall, the people of Fiji.”

While Fiji is yet to be officially endorsed as the 2010 AGM, SpiceNews understands it is the only destination in the running, after bids from several Oceania countries fell over before the Bangkok AGM.

The ASTW AGM program each year consists of the annual general meeting, along with the Travel Journalism Awards for Excellence, a gala dinner, and pre- and post-AGM familiarisation trips.

Fiji would be a first time host of the ASTW AGM, which in previous years has been held in Bangkok, Shanghai, Melbourne, Broadbeach (Gold Coast), Sydney, Seoul, Wellington and Ho Chi Minh City.

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