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News Updates

Australia steps up to 12th place in a pre-COVID-19 world

Released by Association of Australian Convention Bureaux on Wednesday, 13 May 2020

The ICCA Statistics Report for city and country rankings released overnight show Australia has moved up from 13th to 12th position with a total of 272 international association meetings held in 2019. 

The report by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) examines the global association meetings market. It recorded a total of 13,254 rotating international association meetings taking place in 2019 – an increase of 2.5 per cent compared against the same time in 2018.  

Strong regional competition saw China-PR move to 7th place (539 meetings), Japan 8th (527 meetings) and Republic of Korea 13th (248 meetings).

Association of Australian Convention Bureaux (AACB) CEO, Andrew Hiebl says that: “This is a fantastic result for Australia against strong regional competition and is reflective of the progressive work that convention bureaux are undertaking across the country in partnership with their State and Territory Governments and the industry operators they represent."

"It also recognises the strong support offered nationally by the Australian Government through initiatives such as Tourism Australia’s Business Events Bid Fund Program.” 

“Special recognition must be given to BESydney, with Sydney achieving a top 20 position in the global cities rankings with 93 international association meetings held in 2019. This is an amazing result for Australia and has been a long-time aspiration.” 

While COVID-19 restrictions on international travel and gatherings pose significant challenges in 2020 and beyond, Australia is optimistic about the future. 

Noting Australia’s successful management and suppression strategy in the fight against COVID-19, it puts the country in a strong position to provide a safe environment to host international association meetings in the future. Through the Business Events Council of Australia, the industry has rallied together as one to put forward best practice COVIDSafe Guidelines to Government to ensure safety and hygiene protocols are in place, ready to restart in the new world. 

“We are pleased to see all Australian destinations continue to succeed. A core function of the AACB is to facilitate collaboration amongst its members. This allows them to share performance data and best practices to grow the overall business events industry in Australia,” said Hiebl.