Tax Free World Association president Erik Juul-Mortensen told a press conference today (Monday October 19) at the opening of the association’s prestigious exhibition in Cannes, that the show was full with 463 exhibitors, but pre-registered visitors were down 8%.
Last year was a record year with 5,756 visitors, 1% more than in 2007.
Juul-Mortensen said he thought the final figure for visitors may be further down, but that he was “cautiously optimistic”.
With the TFWA celebrating its 25th anniversary, the president and association founder used his opening address to review how the duty free/travel retail sector has evolved. He was followed by economist, futurist and humanitarian Jacques Attali, who looked at the sociological and economic perspective of current global economic trends.
Estée Lauder executive chairman, William P Lauder, discussed women’s health issues in a global environment while Live Aid organiser, Bob Geldof, looked at global geopolitical trends and their impact on business and populations in developing countries.
The exhibition, which has 103 wine and spirits exhibitors, 22% of the total, closes on Thursday.