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October 6, 2014

Asia: Quicker immigration clearance, access to unique venues among Japan's new lures for MICE visitors

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Japan Convention Bureau (JCB) is rolling out a number of measures to boost MICE footfalls as part of the country’s efforts to become a tourism-oriented destination with a targeted arrival of 20 million visitors by 2020.

Among the initiatives is the introduction of fast lanes for VIPs and international travellers attending business events in Japan next year, with Narita International Airport and Kansai International Airport being the first gateways to offer this perk.

The country will also allow “trusted” travellers – frequent visitors to Japan who have been identified by the immigration authorities as posing “low risk” – to use automated gates at the immigration checkpoints.

Akira Ninagawa, executive director of JCB, who spoke to TTGmice e-Weekly during Visit Japan Travel Mart 2014 last week, also revealed that the bureau would identify unique venues and cultural programmes to attract more MICE groups.

Ninagawa said: “Places such as Tokyo National Museum, where we conducted the Japan Night (the opening dinner of Visit Japan Travel Mart 2014), Nijo Castle in Kyoto and Atakemaru (a Samurai ship) cruise round Tokyo Bay are unique venues we would like to introduce to international MICE visitors.”

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