The Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) today cancelled the 1st PATA Sustainable Tourism Conference which was scheduled to take place at the Imperial Century Hotel in Banten, Western Java, Indonesia, October 23-26.
PATA Events staff this morning e-mailed, faxed and phoned confirmed delegates, speakers and media to inform them of the unfortunate decision.
PATA President and CEO Mr. Peter de Jong, said: "While PATAís first inclination after the Bali attacks was to fully commit to operating the event as planned, the upgraded travel advisories imposed on Indonesia by Australia, Germany, UK, and the US governments have caused a significant number of our speakers and delegates to cancel their participation. This affected our ability to deliver a quality forum for discussion, learning and networking."
Ninety international delegates plus 77 from Indonesia had registered for the conference. PATA Managing Director-Events, Ms. Sheila Leong, said: "The cancellation is a bitter disappointment, after we worked so hard to set up the event with a cast of distinguished international speakers."
Mr. de Jong said PATA remained fully dedicated to helping Indonesia rebuild its tourism sector.
PATA Vice President-Development, Mr. Peter Semone, is in Bali helping Indonesia tourism officials implement crisis management policies. PATA in consultation with the Ministry for Culture and Tourism in Indonesia and will create a Recovery Task Force to help the countryís medium- and long-term tourism revival.
Mr. de Jong said: "The unfortunate cancelling of the 1st PATA Sustainable Tourism Conference in no way affects our proactive plans to hold the 52nd PATA Annual Conference in Bali in April next year." PATA Annual Conference will take place April 13-17, 2003 in Bali.