Dubai welcomes 674,000 medical tourists in 2022
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Dubai welcomes 674,000 medical tourists in 2022

Dubai welcomes 674,000 medical tourists in 2022

The city’s strategic location, exceptional infrastructure and amenities add to the factors that have raised its status as a medical tourism hub

Gulf Business
Dubai Health Authority

Dubai registered remarkable growth in medical tourism in 2022 with 674,000 medical tourists spending $270m (Dhs992m) in the year, an increase of Dhs262m compared to a year earlier.

A report by the Dubai Health Authority (DHA) shows that 39 per cent of the medical tourists who came to the city were from Asian countries, 22 per cent from Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States and 21 per cent from Arab and GCC countries.

Awadh Seghayer Al Ketbi, director general of the DHA said the city’s ability to provide high-quality patient-centred medical care has accelerated its growth as an Arab, regional and international healthcare destination.

“Dubai’s strategic location, safety, exceptional infrastructure and world-leading amenities add to the factors that have raised its status as a medical tourism hub,” he said.

The three specialities that saw the highest number of medical tourists were dermatology (31 per cent), dentistry (24 per cent) and gynaecology (18 per cent). Medical tourists from Asia, Europe and Africa, including from GCC and Arab countries visited the emirate for treatment in the fields of orthopaedics, plastic surgery, ophthalmology, fertility treatments, hospitalisation and recovery.

Al Ketbi further said Dubai’s vision to provide a world-class healthcare model and an integrated medical care system that offers cutting-edge facilities, advanced technologies, smart solutions and state-of-the-art treatment methods, as well as highly-qualified professionals across all fields of medicine have driven its global competitiveness in the sector.

DHA is committed to attracting investments in the healthcare sector by collaborating with prestigious international healthcare institutions to establish facilities that can meet growing treatment needs across all specialities.

Dubai tourism hub

Meanwhile, Dubai received 14.36 million international overnight visitors last year, a 97 per cent year-on-year increase from 7.28 million tourists that arrived in the city in 2021.

The latest data from the city’s Department of Economy and Tourism shows that last year’s arrivals closed in on the 2019 pre-pandemic visitor figures of 16.73 million.

The city’s inbound visitors last year reached 86 per cent of its pre-pandemic levels, while arrivals to the Middle East reached 83 per cent, according to state news agency WAM.

“Dubai’s ability to rapidly accelerate tourism growth, which has marked it out as a clear frontrunner in the international industry, demonstrates the far-reaching vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum to transform the emirate into an important global player in shaping the future of vital sectors,” said Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Executive Council.

“The remarkable rise in international visitation in 2022 supports the ambitious goal of the Dubai Economic Agenda D33 to double the size of the emirate’s economy by 2033.”

Read: Dubai receives 14.36 million international visitors in 2022

However, global tourist travel in 2022 was 37 per cent lower than in 2019, United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) data reveals.

Dubai tourism in 2022“While the global economy remains in a state of flux, Dubai has emerged as a clear leader in the tourism industry,” added Helal Saeed Almarri, director general of Dubai’s Department of Economy and Tourism.

“As the fastest growing city in the Middle East, Dubai’s continuous growth has been made possible by the unwavering support of our stakeholders and partners and a raft of strategic investments and federal policy reforms that have led to a steady flow of global entrepreneurs, talent, investors, and business and leisure travellers.”

The Middle East’s tourism and business hub received significant visitors from its stronghold markets. Western Europe and GCC regions each accounted for a 21 per cent share of arrivals. South Asia contributed 17 per cent of the total volume and 12 per cent of visitors arrived from the MENA region. The Americas accounted for seven per cent of arrivals, while visitors from the North Asia and South East Asia regions and Africa each contributed five per cent. Australasia accounted for two per cent.

Read: Tourists from over 80 countries visited MENA region in 2022, reveals Uber

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