Paris and Vienna in the lead

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According to the figures (2008) published by ICCA (International Congress & Convention Association), the congress industry displays encouraging results worldwide.

The association identified 7,475 events in 2008, which represents a 12% increase compared to 2007. No surprises concerning the country ranking: the United States (507 events) and Germany (402) have been heading the list for 4 years. Then come Spain and France which show a rise of respectively 40 and 75 events organised in 2008.Austria Center Vienna

On the other hand, the city ranking marks some changes. Paris is in the lead, tied with Vienna (139 events). The French capital thus gains two places compared to last year and the two cities forestall their rivals Barcelona and Singapore. This pole position can be explained by the mobilization of Parisian business tourism industry, which multiplied its efforts to improve the overall welcome of international visitors to congresses over the past several years. It is also interesting to note the arrival of newcomers in the top 20 including Athens, Buenos Aires, Sao Paulo and Tokyo, as well as the strong positions of Asian cities such as Seoul and Singapore.

Are those tendencies going to remain in 2009 or will the downturn imply the arrival of new competitive destinations?

Table 1: ICCA country and city ranking measured by number of meetings organised in 2008

Rank Country # Meetings Rank City # Meetings
1 U.S.A. 507 1 Paris 139
2 Germany 402 Vienna 139
3 Spain 347 3 Barcelona 136
4 France 334 4 Singapore 118
5 United Kingdom 322 5 Berlin 100
6 Italy 296 6 Budapest 95
7 Brazil 254 7 Amsterdam 89
8 Japan 247 8 Stockholm 87
9 Canada 231 9 Seoul 84
10 Netherlands 227 10 Lisbon 83
11 China-P.R. 223 11 Copenhagen 82
12 Austria 196 12 Sao Paulo 75
13 Switzerland 194 13 Prague 74
14 Australia 182 14 Beijing 73
15 Portugal 177 15 Athens 72
16 Republic of Korea 169 Buenos Aires 72
17 Sweden 163 Istanbul 72
18 Finland 142 18 Bangkok 71
19 Greece 123 19 London 68
20 Belgium 122 Tokyo 68

Slovenia is on 40th place, with 43 meetings, then it comes Croatia on the 41st place together with New Zealand with 38 meetings, and Romania is in the 48th place with 26 meetings.

ICCA Rankings for Belgrade

Belgrade Meetings                     7 (2007)                                 13 (2008)

Belgrade Ranking                     168th (2007)                              120th (2008)

Serbia Meetings                         11 (2007)                                20 (2008)

Serbia Ranking                         69th (2007)                               55th (2008)

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Miona Milic
More than 10 years in events industry, as a project manager, content developer, offline and internet marketing campaigns, event manager for SEEbtm party, Editor-in-Chief of SEEbtm magazine… Professionalism, constant learning and personal, such as business upgrading, finds essential for success. Creativity in all fields is very important to her. Love to be physically active, travel, meet people and have a good time. But, beside everything, the greatest accomplishment and most important thing for her is being a MOM.

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