By The Nation
The bureau also said Thailand is ranked the top destination in Asean for hosting conferences, according to the ICCA. These results underscored Thailand as a leading destination for business events trusted by international associations while TCEB emphasised that the bureau will continue to prompt the Thai industries to host more international conventions.
Chiruit Isarangkun na Ayuthaya, president of the Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB), said the conventions sector contributes more than 30 per cent of the revenue to Thailand's MICE industry. This sector supports the country's economic development by providing platforms for knowledge exchange to enhance professional capabilities, products and services development, as well as innovations which can benefit the country at the macro level.
"Thailand’s convention sector has been rising continuously. In the first quarter of the fiscal year 2019 (October to December 2018), there were 70,000 business travellers in the conventions sector, generating Bt5.5 billion in revenue to the country. Meanwhile, conferences held in Thailand trend to cover broader fields following global trends such as technologies and startups.
Chiruit said: “Currently, the average expenditure in the convention sector stood at Bt80,000 per traveller per trip. This achievement reflects TCEB's continuous works, especially in terms of the bureau's efforts to bid for the right to host annual conferences of professional associations at the global and regional levels.
“With the fact that each bidding takes around three to seven years in preparation, TCEB has outlined proactive strategies to enhance partnership with membership organisations such as professional associations, non-profit organisations, educational institutions and entrepreneurs.
@The focus is on key industries which comply with the Thai government’s national policy. TCEB aims to encourage these professional associations to bid for their annual conventions to take place in Thailand," Chiruit said.
Meanwhile, according to an international ranking conducted by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), in 2017, Thailand is ranked first in Asean and 25th place in the world when considering numbers of international conventions hosted in the country, followed by Singapore with 160 conventions and Malaysia with 112.
This month, there are eight international conferences taking place in Thailand, including conferences in medical, energy and electricity, financial, as well as creative and advertising industries.
Highlights of the international conferences are the Asia-Pacific Academy of Ophthalmology Congress from March 6-9 at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre. Co-hosted by the Royal College of Ophthalmologists of Thailand, it is expected that this year the event will attract more than 5,000 delegates and generate at least Bt440 million revenue.
From March 19-23 at Bitec, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers will host an exhibition on engineering and technological fields in power generation, transmission and distribution and renewable energy. Held in the US for the past 40 years, Thailand is the first country in Asia to host the event. It is expected to attract more than 400 exhibitors and 3,000 international delegates with Bt240 million in revenue expected to be generated.