Australia has edged closer to the top 10 global association meeting destinations, stepping up one spot to 13th place in the International Congress & Convention Association (ICCA) Country & City Rankings.
Australia hosted a total of 265 international association meetings in 2018 out of a global total 12,937 rotating international association meetings.
“While we are within grasp of a top 10 position, last held in 2006, now is not the time to become complacent,” said Association of Australian Convention Bureaux CEO Andrew Hiebl. “Our global share of these meetings is not increasing, currently 2 per cent, at a time when the Asia Pacific’s total share is expanding.
“Positive policies that improve Australia’s competitiveness, such as the introduction of Tourism Australia’s bid fund program announced in 2018, help Australia’s convention bureaux attract more business events to the country.
“With a federal election taking place in Australia this Saturday, 18 May, there is still time to back the $30 billion business events industry and the 193,000 jobs it supports each year.”
Regional competition was also heating up with Japan coming in at 7th place with 492 meetings, China one spot higher at 8th with 449 meetings, and Republic of Korea one spot above Australia at 12th with 273 meetings.
The global association meetings market was up 3 per cent compared against the same time in 2017. The US remains in the top country spot, unchallenged for over two decades. Germany remains in second place and 2017’s number three the United Kingdom drops to fifth place, overtaken by Spain, which rises to third. After exiting the top 5 last year, France re-enters in 2018 in fourth place.
Italy replaces France in sixth place, and Japan and China remain in seventh and eighth place for another year. The Netherlands and Canada swap positions, coming in at ninth and 10th respectively.
Portugal remains in 11th place and Republic of Korea climbs one position to 12th. Brazil and Poland fall one place to 17th and 19th respectively, and Switzerland drops to 20th place, while Australia and Sweden climb to 13th and 14th. Austria remains in the top 20 but falls four places to 16th. Newcomer Argentina regains its position in the top 20 after falling to 21st place in 2017, knocking Denmark from 20th to 22nd place.