Frankfurt/Main, 10 May 2012. Germany has again defended its position as one of the leading global destinations for meetings and conventions. For the eighth year in succession, the study conducted by the International Congress & Convention Association (ICCA) showed that Germany is the top location in Europe for association meetings. Globally, Germany occupies second place. According to the rankings, only the USA has more international conventions. In 2011, the experts counted a total of 577 international association meetings in Germany – an increase of 35 over the previous year – and considerably more than second-placed Spain, which hosted 463 conventions. The United Kingdom follows in third place with 434 events.
According to the ICCA city rankings, Berlin was able to defend its outstanding fourth place in the global rankings for cities. It hosted 147 international association meetings, nine more than in the previous year. Berlin therefore continues to lie ahead of Singapore and Madrid and behind the unchanged top three of Vienna (181), Paris (174) and Barcelona (150).
“It is no accident that Germany is a fixture among the world leaders in organising international conventions. As well as offering very good value for money, excellent infrastructure and a wide range of event centres, Germany also scores highly in terms of innovation. For example, this has made Germany a leader in the area of organising green meetings – a theme that will continue to grow in importance going forward,” says a confident Matthias Schultze, managing director of the GCB German Convention Bureau e.V. The GCB markets Germany both nationally and internationally as a destination for conventions, meetings, incentives and events and is the central point of contact for all customers planning events in the country.
“Sharpening the profile of a city or region also helps to generate events. This is why, when we market Germany’s convention and meeting destinations together with our partners and members, we look to locate events in regions which are home to clusters of business and scientific expertise relevant to the theme. Programmes of events that fit well with the theme of the convention, such as factory tours, offer participants a high level of added value,” says Schultze outlining the strategy of the GCB.
Evaluations conducted by the GCB offer an insight into the sectors principally involved in the association meetings included in the ICCA study for Germany in 2011. Technology and innovation accounted for more than one quarter of the international conventions in Germany while around 20 percent of the association meetings considered were in the medical and healthcare sectors.
The GCB has also investigated the countries, in which the international organisations running their conventions in Germany were based. The United Kingdom was the leading foreign market with 66 association meetings followed by the USA in second place (64). Trailing by some distance were Germany’s European neighbours Belgium (36), France, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Austria.
The annual ICCA statistical study “International Association Meetings Market” evaluates the trends in the international meetings market. The ICCA studies association meetings with at least 50 participants, which take place regularly and rotate between at least three countries. The International Congress & Convention Association, which was founded in 1963 and is based in Amsterdam, has been collecting information about association events world-wide since 1972.