Thailand has made MICE – Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions – a hallmark of their tourism strategy for years and now it looks like the effort is paying off.
The Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) is tasked with the goal of increasing Thailand’s position in Asia’s business events industry and as Thailand looks the the coming AEC (ASEAN Economic Community), the country wants to emerge as a business travel leader in ASEAN.
MICE is big business
From October 2013 to September 2014 Thailand hosted 919,614 business event travelers who contributed more than US$2.69 billion to the country’s economy and so far 2015 is showing modest gains on a year over year basis.
And it’s Competitive
Thailand offers a total of 200,174 square metres of floor space and generally attractive hotel room rates. As well the country was recently voted the world’s best destination for nightlife thanks to its bar scene, local night markets and Bangkok’s legendary street cuisine. In addition, Thailand has a host of local activities throughout the year making it an attractive destination regardless of the season.
These attributes are paying off as Bangkok was just recently announced as the host city for the prestigious One Young World Summit 2015, which will run from November 18 – 21, 2015. As the first city in Asia to host this event, Bangkok was chosen over other leading contenders such as Kobe, Japan and Hong Kong. One Young World is the world’s premier forum for young leaders, with past speakers including Kofi Anan, Sir Richard Branson, and Professor Muhammad Yunus.
This annual summit gathers together approximately 2,000 young visionaries aged 18-30 from every corner of the world, who are leaders in their respective fields. As they say in the business, it’s a good get for the TCEB.
The Thai business events sector is expected to continue to grow in 2015, with Thailand welcoming 1,036,300 business events visitors who are expected to generate revenue of approximately US$3.55 billion.