The Al Ain Fair was held at the InterContinental Al Ain Resort from Monday 20 to Thursday 23 April and brought together 33 accredited UK English language centres and 43 study abroad agents and educational consultants from key markets in the Middle East, North Africa, Central Asia and Turkey, including Algeria, Armenia, Georgia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Lebanon, Libya, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and Uzbekistan. The workshop was organised by the English Language Promotions Group, which comprises the British Council, English UK, UK Trade & Investment and VisitBritain.
The Al Ain Fair is the third workshop to be jointly organised by the British Council, English UK, UK Trade & Investment and VisitBritain. The first workshop of its kind, 'The Cancun Fair: Working for the Americas', which took place in the Presidente InterContinental Cancun Resort in March 2007, was commended for its small and intimate yet businesslike nature. 'The Hong Kong Fair: Working for the Asia Pacific', which was held in the Renaissance Harbour View Hotel Hong Kong in February 2008, built on this successful foundation.
Participants in Al Ain benefitted from a programme of one-to-one appointment sessions and networking opportunities. Educators praised the quality of the agents and the concept of the event - 'A great event. I really like this type of boutique fair. I met one agent five times during the event and we had the chance to get to know each other. You don't manage that at a big fair.' One delegate commented, 'Great fair all round - very nice location, good balance of seminars and appointments, very good agents, excellent food, and organisation from English UK!' Agents commended the hospitality and the wide range of accredited UK English language centres in attendance - 'it's the best fair I've ever been to...a great opportunity to cooperate with UK organisations.'
A gallery of photographs of the Al Ain Fair is available here.