The MEADFA Conference 2019
At its meeting earlier this month, the Board of the Middle East & Africa Duty Free Association decided to cancel the 2020 MEADFA Conference. The event, set to take place on 23-24 November in Dubai, will not be held this year given the severe economic impact of the covid-19 pandemic on the global travel retail industry, as well as ongoing uncertainty surrounding travel restrictions.

As part of its mission to support the travel retail business in the Middle East, Africa and beyond, MEADFA will shortly launch a series of interactive online forums. The webinars will present the viewpoint of the three key industry stakeholders in turn – retailers, brands and landlords. MEADFA will also maintain its training event programme with a new e-learning format. Further information will be shared with MEADFA members soon.

In a further initiative to ease the challenges its members face, MEADFA has decided to defer membership fees for a year.

MEADFA President Haitham Al Majali said: “After continuously monitoring the current health crisis and staying in close contact with our partners and delegates, we have decided to cancel this year’s MEADFA Conference. This was an extremely difficult decision to take, given the importance of the event and its role in supporting our advocacy work, but the Board unanimously feels that it would not be appropriate to go ahead with the event in the current context. We will continue to monitor the situation as it develops, before announcing the dates for our next conference. We thank our members, sponsors and business partners across the region for their understanding.”

TFWA President Alain Maingreaud said: “MEADFA has the full support of TFWA at this challenging time for all of us in duty free and travel retail. We look forward to helping manage the rescheduled MEADFA Conference, which will provide an overdue opportunity for our industry to gather and plan the recovery in the Middle East and Africa.”