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NBTA : November 2008
Chairpersons’ Report xx 00 07 As we wing our way towards the end of the financial year 2007-2008 we have witnessed many changes in a very dynamic travel arena. Travel is diverse by nature and managing this group of commodities is increasing in complexity. A recent Best Western/NBTA survey of the US and Canadian travel managers confirmed trending data we have been seeing for several years. In particular, cost containment measures such as stronger policy mandates, online booking and expense management tools, movement to mid-scale hotels whilst reducing the number of preferred hotels. The survey also confirmed the use of more “virtual”meetings. Is it any wonder many successful businesses treat travel management as a specialised business function? It is truly a strategic function that balances employee and corporate needs with financial and procurement goals. One of the recent changes in the air travel market is the landmark Open Skies Agreement between Australia and the United States. The long-awaited agreement, which will allow additional Australian and US airlines to operate between the two countries and remove restriction on competition, could make trans-Pacific travel substantially cheaper. There is increased focus on Corporate Social Responsibility and also the management of an organisation’s Carbon Footprint. These topics have reached the travel managers in-trays. Managing these initiatives can be quite complex depending on the individuals travel profile. The NBTA Asia Pacific Regional Business Travel Conference in Sydney on 25 & 26 August 2008 will provide you with leading practice strategies to assist you and your organisation in addressing corporate social responsibility. Is it any wonder many successful businesses treat travel management as a specialised business function? It is truly a strategic function that balances employee and corporate needs with financial and procurement goals. With this increasing complexity and change in the travel industry, NBTA Asia Pacific is even more committed tosupporting the advancement of the business travel professional and continues to offer up-to-date informative education, training and networking opportunities throughout the year. We are planning some very exciting workshops covering topics such as green/sustainable travel, duty of care and traveler safety and also some best practice benchmarking. Our conference planning for 2008 is well underway. Wewere excited to announce our guest speakers, The Honourable Mr Alexander Downer and Mr Tony Wheeler. The conference this year is being hosted at the ANZ Stadium and the programme is shaping up to be one of our best, so watch for further information as it’s distributed. I am fortunate enough to be attending the NBTA International Convention and Exposition being held in Los Angeles on 27-30 July 2008. NBTA has recently announced that Dr. Alan Greenspan, former Chairman of the Board of Governors of the US Federal Reserve System, will speak during the Wednesday General Session. NBTA President & CEO, Kevin Maguire, CCTE, commented that, “Alan Greenspan’s insights into the state of the world economy and future economic expectations will provide NBTA Convention attendees a framework for thinking about business travel trends. I should also take a moment to introduce our new Board of Directors. We are very fortunate that Chris Telfer has agreed to rejoin the Board and we also have two new faces, Melinda Lalor (Global Travel Manager Aristocrat Leisure) and Kate Pritchett, Travel & Corporate Card Program Manager, The University of Sydney. As you are already aware Karen Davies has been appointed by NBTA as the full time Regional Director of NBTA Asia Pacific. Elizabeth Montgomery has agreed to remain as the Secretariat and will continue to provide the excellent support she has provided to date. The team is steadily working towards shaping our new organisation NBTA Asia Pacific. I am sure that with the assistance and dedication of this team we will be able to deliver greater outcomes for the organisation. I trust our members will not only benefit greatly from the resources and information from its Board but also our new global network of travel managers. Over the coming months we will showcase examples of the materials that can be accessed through the new organisation in our newsletter and on our web site. Thank you to all our members and sponsors for your continued support. Should you have any questions, suggestions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact myself, Karen, Elizabeth or any one of the Directors. Monica Gardner Chair, NBTA Asia Pacific Volume 1 Issue 1 Asia Pacific Corporate Traveller