Dubai’s acquisition of the QE2 is a major tourism coup for the emirate which will further boost links between the UAE and the UK, a British business leader said today.
Mark Beer, newly elected chairman of the British Business Group in Dubai, said the announcement that the historic British ocean liner will be permanently berthed off Palm Jumeirah would help to reinforce business relations between the two countries and increase the number of UK tourists visiting the Emirates.
Dubai World company Istithmar, sister company of Palm Jumeirah developers Nakheel, has bought the passenger ship from Britain’s Cunard Line and will turn it into a first-class floating hotel, retail and entertainment destination to be berthed at a specially-constructed pier from 2009.
“There is a long history of association between the UAE and UK business communities, not least within the travel and leisure markets,” said Beer. “This latest announcement is a demonstration of the strength of this commercial relationship and gives an enormous boost to the BBG’s main remit of fostering business links between the two countries. The presence of this historic ship in Dubai will also help to increase the number of UK tourists visiting the UAE, which currently stands at around one million per year.”
The BBG, was set up in 1987 to encourage the development of British business in the UAE and now has more than 850 members. It undertakes a wide range of activities from communicating with decision makers and testing British goods to sharing best business practice and arranging networking events for its members.
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