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Record buyer numbers at TFWA Cannes 2023

The 2023 edition of the Tax Free World Association (TFWA) World Exhibition & Conference welcomed a record number of buyers and landlords.

TFWA port
TFWA 2023 visitor numbers were almost back to 2019 levels

This year’s annual event, which took place from 1-5 October in Cannes, France, saw 2,761 buyers and landlords in attendance – a 15% increase on the 2019 number.

The total visitor number for this year’s event was just shy of the 2019 attendance figure, with 7,385 visitors in 2023 compared with 7,531 in 2019 (the highest attendance on record). The 2023 visitor number marks a 23% increase from 2022, which received 6,017 guests.

Erik Juul-Mortensen, TFWA president, said: “We thought that the mood was great at TFWA World Exhibition & Conference 2022, but the atmosphere this year has reached another level.

“Beyond just the large number of attendees, it is the spirit that we have seen that has been remarkable – the quality of the exhibition and those attending it has been outstanding.

“It is particularly gratifying to be able to welcome delegates from all parts of the world once again and there is no doubt that TFWA World Exhibition & Conference has fully returned to being a truly global event.”

A total of 1,762 delegates attended the TFWA World Conference on 2 October.

This year’s exhibition spanned 25,212 square metres, up from 20,751 square metres in 2022 and 23,443 square metres in 2019.

Exhibitors spanned eight sectors, including alcoholic beverages, and the global reach included Uruguay, Jordan and Peru.

TFWA’s One2One service helped to organise 2,066 on-site meetings during the show.

During his opening speech during the TFWA World Conference, Juul-Mortensen noted that despite people being hungry to travel again, global passenger numbers were still 10% behind pre-Covid levels.

Furthermore, he highlighted that recovery was ‘patchy’. Airports in Europe are close to pre-Covid passenger numbers, but traffic in Asia is lagging behind.

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