The International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) has released its annual country and city rankings, which mark the top-performing destinations for international association meetings. A total of 12,937 rotating association meetings took place in 2018, at an increase of 379 on the 2017 tally, and the highest-ever figure recorded.
Top spot on the city list went to Paris, which previously held the title in 2016, with 212 meetings; while the US topped the country rankings – as it has for more than 20 years – with 947 meetings, a considerable margin from second-place Germany on 642.
Asia in focus
Singapore (8th) and Bangkok (10th) represented Asia in the top 10 city rankings, with 145 and 135 meetings respectively. Hong Kong (12th), Tokyo (equal 13th), Seoul (15th) and Taipei (equal 20th) also performed well.
Bangkok jumped seven places from its 2017 ranking, Taipei was up by six, Tokyo climbed five and Hong Kong improved by one rank; while Singapore dropped two places and Seoul dropped five.
In the country rankings, Japan (7th) and China (8th) held on to their 2017 rankings, with 492 and 449 international association meetings respectively. South Korea climbed one position to 12th, while Australia took 13th.
Grain of salt
ICCA’s annual country and city rankings are highly anticipated by the meetings industry. However, ICCA emphasises that this annual report is a snapshot of just one segment of the meetings industry. Only association meetings that rotate between at least three countries, have a proven attendance of at least 50 participants, and are held on a regular basis are recorded.
ICCA CEO Senthil Gopinath, said: “Although the most comprehensive global benchmark of the international association meetings sector, the ICCA rankings should not be mistaken as providing an overview of the entire meetings industry.
“We have recorded our largest-ever annual snapshot of the immediate past year’s meetings data in 2018. These results closely follow the release of our 55-year history of the international association meetings market in October 2018.
“ICCA’s latest figures uphold the mature, robust growth pattern we identified in this report and provide more evidence of our firm belief that the association sector continues to be an unrivalled stimulator of global societal development and force for progress across the globe.”
The full ICCA statistics reports are available now to ICCA members and the rankings for all countries and cities will be released to all in mid-June.