S’pore meeting market grows

The Union of International Associations (UIA) has ranked Singapore fourth after it hosted 736 meetings during 2015, one event fewer than third-placed Belgium, which benefits from hosting the European Union. The US was the top destination, followed by South Korea.

Singapore welcomed about 3 million visitors for meetings, incentive travel, conventions and exhibitions (Mice), and generated tourism revenue worth an estimated S$4.5 billion. For the 14th year, the International Congress and Convention Association has named the city-state as one of the best international meeting locations.

Business events in sectors such as information and medical technology were helping to establish it further on the IT map, with many more in the diary.

“As a city with a multitude of strategic industries, Singapore is delighted to welcome Mice events that further add to our economic vibrancy,” said Melissa Ow, deputy CEO at the Singapore Tourism Board. “Events that offer stimulating content and inspire further dialogue will also build up our thought leadership, which is important for our knowledge-driven industries.
“We are proud that Singapore remains a prominent international Mice destination that continues to attract events with quality content.

“Although 2015 was a challenging year with various headwinds in the tourism landscape, Singapore’s Mice industry held up well.”

Internet and cyber security are noticeable themes on the Mice calendar. November sees the “ISACA Cybersecurity Nexus Asia-Pacific” gathering and the “Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) 100” is arriving in the Lion City next year.

ISACA marketing boss Tim Mason explained: “Singapore’s strategic location as the centre
of Southeast Asia makes the Lion City an ideal place to demonstrate our cyber security capabilities, and allows us to reach out to regional visitors, who will bring further diversity and sophistication as they interact with our attendees. That, along with Singapore’s big push to become a smart, connected city, made it a relatively easy decision for ISACA.”

November sees an Asean first with the Asia-Pacific Medical Technology Association (APACMed) gathering.

“Singapore is an ideal location to host the Asia-Pacific MedTech Forum because of its proximity to several important markets in the region,” said Vladimir Makatsaria, chairman of APACMed.

“Our attendees value the state-of-the-art event venues and outstanding business infrastructure. We are confident that this year’s forum will be a memorable experience for all involved.”