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Berlin top choice for international conventions

No other city in the world hosted more international congresses in 2015

Berlin is the top location choice for gatherings of international associations, as revealed in statistics published today by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA). With 195 events hosted last year, Berlin surpassed both Paris (186) and Barcelona (180), followed by Vienna, Madrid and London. Singapore is the city with the most events of this kind outside Europe. The ranking is one of the most important performance indicators in the meetings industry and has great influence on the awarding of many major congresses. It is the first time that Berlin is at the top of the list.

Michael Müller, Governing Mayor of Berlin: “Berlin has become the leading international meeting place. Whether healthcare, mobility, IT, and many other highly innovative industries, all roads lead to Berlin at some point. This also benefits Berlin's role as a location for trade fairs and conventions, allowing the city to offers its visitors an ideal environment for doing business. Behind this are many years of constant work and effort for which I wish to express my gratitude to all those involved in this success. Berlin has put its efforts to developing this aspect of its economy with consistency and our long-term, future-orientated policies are paying off.”

Burkhard Kieker, visitBerlin CEO commented, “This is a great confirmation of the work being done by the visitBerlin Berlin Convention Office and the entire meetings industry in our city. We also wish to thank our partners Messe Berlin and Estrel Berlin for their continued cooperation. The fight to host any of these conventions is hard-won. This can be seen just from looking at the list of our competitors. In order to continue to play at the top of the league, Berlin needs to begin planning the expansion of its capacities wisely.”

More and more events in the medical segment 
In addition to the major conventions covered by these statistics, the city also hosts many events in its hotels and smaller conference centres. 2015 saw Berlin host more association meetings with more than 1,000 people in attendance than in the previous year; there was also growth in the number of events with 50 to 200 participants.

“These figures underline the non-stop rapid development of Berlin as a meeting destination to which we have been able to make a significant contribution with our broad portfolio of events, but especially international medical conferences”, says Dr. Christian Göke, CEO of Messe Berlin GmbH. “In 2015, Berlin hosted the European Academy of Neurology with more than 7,000 in attendance and the annual congress of the European Society of Intensive Care Medicine with 5,500 participants took place in our CityCube. In the past two years, we have successfully increased the average number of participants per conference by around 30 per cent to almost 4,000. This is a leading figure globally. We have been able to continue this trend in the first part of 2016.”

Conferences are an extremely important economic factor for the city of Berlin. Each participant in a meeting spends on average €232 a day in Berlin, about 12 per cent more than the conventional visitor to the German capital.

Berlin has been in the Top 5 since 2004
Association meetings included in the ICCA statistics must be attended by at least 50 participants, take place regularly, and switch among at least three different countries. The ICCA statistics exclusively count international meetings of associations to ensure a global comparison. Berlin has been in the Top 5 since 2004. The ICCA is an association of the most important organizations in the meetings industry. Its members include more than 1,000 members from over 90 countries.

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