Marriott International has revealed its expansion plan in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region with the addition of 80 properties and additional franchises, which will increase its portfolio to 240 properties within the next five years.

The company currently operates and franchises 164 properties in the MEA region with nine brands.

With the expansion, Marriott will increase its presence within United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabian property markets, as more than half of the properties are expected to be located in the two regions.

"Marriott International aims to triple its operations in Saudi Arabia with 4,000 rooms across 20 hotels by 2020."

Marriott International aims to triple its operations in Saudi Arabia with 4,000 rooms across 20 hotels by 2020.

The leisure group will add a 224-room hotel to its portfolio in Fez, Morocco, a 244-room hotel in Constantine, Algeria, and a 426-room Marriott Hotel in Makkah, Saudi Arabia.

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Marriott International Middle East and Africa president Alex Kyriakidis said: "Our growth and success to date within the Middle East and Africa is in large part to the members of our team and our associates, who by 2018 are projected to be 21,000 strong within the region.

"It is our associates, those who strive day in and day out to care, help and assist in every possible way, that make the company the very best it can be."

At the Arabian Travel Market event, Marriott International CEO Arne Sorenson announced the signing of the company’s newest property, a 300-room hotel in Ras Al Khaimah, UAE, which is set to open in 2019.

The company plans to open more hotels in Algeria, Morocco, Ghana, Ethiopia and Rwanda later in 2015.

Marriott International acquired Protea Hospitality, Africa in 2014 and plans to open four Protea hotels in Cape Town, South Africa in 2015.