The Council of Australian Tour Operators' (CATO) decision to hold its inaugural annual conference in Bali is a landmark in cooperation between a tourist destination and one of its major market sources.
The conference is a direct result of a visit to Bali last November by Peter Baily, CATO chairman, and his vice-chairman Michael Hay, both of whom came away deeply impressed by the efforts made by Balinese tour operators to help their wholesaler partners in Australia resurrect Bali as the favorite holiday destination for Australians.
Baily said that the way his various hosts in Bali had presented their vision for recovery had prompted both himself and Michael Hay to think beyond the problems of Bali to see what could be learned in Bali to the advantage of all wholesalers, in fact, the entire Australian travel industry.
Thus, Baily and Hay have arranged for top speakers to convene in Bali to present papers at the conference at Nusa Dua , June 6-8.
CATO currently has a membership of about 70 companies made up of almost 60 full members who are active wholesale tour operators and about a dozen Associate Members - a new category introduced just a couple of months ago to involve organizations who provide goods and services to tour operators.
The esteem in which the CATO is now held is illustrated by the readiness with which influential members of the travel industry and others have agreed to participate in the Bali conference, which is designed to be a study of crisis management for the travel industry.
Peter Baily says that the main presentation at the three-day conference, entitled "Lessons Learnt", will be delivered by Dr. David Beirman, the Director of the Israel Government Tourist Office in Australia, who has vast experience handling the problems of Israel during the last couple of decades.
Dr. Beirman will be backed by a range of speakers highly skilled in the areas of travel insurance, Government travel advisories, legal challenges and other matters facing the industry.
A widely recognized expert in his area, Dr. Beirman is the author of a book on the strategic marketing approaches required to restore tourism to destinations in crisis.
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