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Association meetings are still on the up

Paris and Madrid overtake Vienna

ICCA (International Congress & Convention Association) has released its statistics for meetings held in 2013. They show continued growth in spite of the years of recession. As many as 11,685 regularly occurring association events which rotate between at least three countries were identified as having taken place during 2013. This was 535 more than the previous year.

There are, however, some surprises in the country and city rankings. Commenting on the statistics for 2013, Martin Sirk, CEO of ICCA says: ‘It shouldn’t be surprising that our 2013 figures have demonstrated the strength of the international association meetings sector, since the overall picture for our industry is significantly better than has been the case for quite some time.

‘But it should be remembered that this is a sector that has shown significant growth in every single year since the financial crisis hit the world economy in 2008. The international association meetings sector is a solid, reliable performer, in good times and bad, and the longer term trends are the most critically important factors when preparing strategic plans and investment decisions. I am convinced that every serious meetings destination, internationally ambitious venue and forward-thinking meetings management company should include international associations in their marketing and development strategies.’

The Top Twenty country rankings were identified as follows, showing the number of association meetings in 2013:
1 U.S.A - 829
2 Germany - 722
3 Spain - 562
4 France - 527
5 UK - 525
6 Italy - 447
7 Japan - 342
8 China - 340
9 Brazil - 315
10 Netherlands - 302
11 Canada - 290
12 Korea - 260
13 Portugal - 249
14 Austria - 244
15 Sweden - 238
16 Australia - 231
17 Argentina - 223
18 Turkey - 221
19 Belgium - 214
20 Switzerland - 205

In the above list, compared with 2012, France has gained a place over the UK and China has climbed above Brazil and the Netherlands.

However, the big surprise in the statistics for individual cities is that Vienna has fallen from the top spot for the first time since 2005 and is now third behind Paris and Madrid.

1 Paris - 204
2 Madrid - 186
3 Vienna - 182
4 Barcelona - 179
5 Berlin - 178
6 Singapore - 175
7 London - 166
8 Istanbul - 146
9 Lisbon - 125
10 Seoul - 125
11 Prague - 121
12 Amsterdam - 120
13 Dublin - 114
14 Buenos Aires - 113
15 Brussels - 111
16 Copenhagen - 109
17 Budapest - 106
18 Beijing - 105
19 Rome - 99
20 Bangkok - 93
21 Stockholm - 93
22 Sydney - 93

China’s dramatic increase in its spend on foreign ...
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