Jonathan Worsley Jonathan Worsley

The Arabian Hotel Investment Conference 2018 (AHIC) is forecasting significant opportunities for hotel investors targeting the Middle East in light of new data from MEED Projects, which predicts that more than US$14bn worth of hotel construction contracts will be awarded in 2018.

According to MEED Projects, a partner of AHIC 2018, the value of new hotel investments in the MENA region could hit a record high in 2018.

MEED Projects director of content and analysis Ed James said in a statement: "After a relatively subdued 2017 up to end of November which has seen US$5.45bn worth of new hotel construction contracts awarded, the value of hotels due to be awarded next year is more than $14bn. This total would comfortably exceed the US$8.5bn awarded in 2016 and the previous record of $11.9bn awarded in 2015."

James added that investment in hotels will comprise about 7% of the total US$200bn scheduled projects spending in the MENA region next year. UAE is reported to be the largest market with $8.4bn worth of contracts, followed by Saudi Arabia at $1.9bn.

These figures will be discussed at the 14th edition of AHIC, which will be held from April 17-19, 2018 at the purpose-built AHIC Village in the grounds of the Waldorf Astoria Ras Al Khaimah, UAE, in partnership with Ras Al Khaimah Tourism Development Authority (RAKTDA).

AHIC co-founder and Bench Events chairman Jonathan Worsley said: "These new figures are exciting for the Middle East hospitality investment community, which gathers annually at AHIC. With oil prices now trading significantly higher than the January 2016 lows, we expect to see signs of recovery and stability in most regional economies."

AHIC 2018 is set to attract around 800 hotel investors, developers, financiers, and C-level hotel executives to attend three days of content, networking and events.

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