TCEB beats 2018 MICE target - Generates revenue of more than 200 billion baht

12 November 2018 – The Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) has announced its performance in the 2018 fiscal year (October 2017-September 2018), noting that the bureau successfully drove MICE industry growth to exceed the target for the year. The number of international MICE travelers to Thailand grew by 19 percent while domestic MICE travelers surged by 28 percent, generating total revenue of more than 212.9 billion baht compared to the last fiscal year. TCEB is moving MICE forward in 2019 fiscal year by using MICE activities to enhance the country's economy and distribute income and knowledge to the communities. The bureau is also working co-create with associations, public and private agencies as well organizations to win more international MICE events.

Speaking about TCEB’s overall performance in the 2018 fiscal year, Mr. Chiruit Isarangkun Na Ayuthaya, TCEB's President, revealed that the number of international and domestic MICE visitors reached 34,267,307, generating total revenue of 212.9 billion. This buoyant growth was largely driven by the government's support in developing the MICE industry as an enabler of economic growth. Other key driving forces were the readiness of MICE venues including hotels, the international convention and exhibition centers in Bangkok and in the 4 MICE Cities as well as MICE professionals who delivered on their capacity for international service standards. These factors reinforced the confidence of international MICE travelers that Thailand is a preferred destination for MICE events. Meanwhile, the bureau has a policy to promote meetings in the provinces with the aim of distributing income and strengthening communities.

“In the 2018 fiscal year, Thailand welcomed 1,255,985 international MICE visitors, an increase of 19.85 percent and generated revenue of 95.6 billion, up 8.10 percent. The average length of stay was 5 days with average spending of 76,135 baht per person per trip. Asian business travelers dominated the market representing 85.77 percent of all MICE visitors to Thailand. The top ten international MICE travelers were from China (214,877), India (152,638), Malaysia (146,387), Singapore (84,211), South Korea (71,141), Vietnam (55,306), Laos (55,125), Japan (51,361), Indonesia (51,320), and the Philippines (42,398). The top five growth markets were Canada (309.97%), Cambodia (182.25%), Myanmar (137.32%), Vietnam (109.26%), and New Zealand (78.92%). Notably, the CLMV economy (Cambodia, Lao, Myanmar, Vietnam) has been growing, positively affecting the number of international business travelers.

Domestic MICE visitor numbers, meanwhile, reached 33,011,322, generating revenue of 117.3 billion for the economy. Revenue surged by 28.9 percent thanks to Thailand's strong economy, which was driven by high growth in exports and tourism. This year, GDP is expected to grow by 20 percent over the previous year and will result in the country's economy expanding by 4 percent. The business and household sectors are more confident about spending and the government's tax deduction measures to promote tourism and MICE events in 55 second-tier provinces nationwide have generated higher revenues. A corporate tax exemption on income equal to 100% of expenses will be offered for seminars and accommodation, transport and other expenses incurred in conducting staff training and seminars in the 55 secondary cities. These factors are expected to boost economic growth.

According to Frost & Sullivan (Thailand) Co., Ltd.'s research on the overall economic impact of the MICE industry, total MICE expenditure in 2018 (excluding participant expenses) was valued at 251.4 billion and is expected to reach 316 - 405 billion in 2022. The MICE industry contributed 177.2 billion to the economy, accounting for 1.2% of overall Thailand GDP in 2018. It created 181,000 jobs and more than 23.4 billion in government tax revenue.

Mr. Chiruit adds that this year, the TCEB has placed importance on a proactive marketing strategy with the aim to win more events, create new events, support event organizing and event bidding as well as promote an image of Thailand as a major destination for the MICE  industry in Asia.

Categorized by business sectors:

  • The Meeting and Incentive Travel industry grew by 26.03 percent in terms of visitor numbers with 231 events supported by the TCEB. The mega MI events included Herbalife China Extravaganza 2017 (20,000 participants) Infinitus (China) Overseas Training 2018 (10,000 participants) Herbalife North Asia Extravaganza 2018 (10,000 participants), and Date with Destiny (QNET Dream International Convention 2018) (8,000 participants).
  • The Convention industry jumped by 61.23 percent in terms of visitor numbers with 108 events supported by the TCEB. The major conventions included MDRT Experience and Global Conference 2018 (6,270 participants) Affiliate World Asia 2017 (2,900 participants) SportAccord Convention 2018 (2,000 participants), and Techsauce Global Summit 2018 (1,500 participants).
  • The TCEB supported 37 international exhibitions comprising 28 upgraded shows and 9 new shows including Taiwan Expo in Thailand 2018 which was organized by government organizations and those supported by foreign governments.   

Regarding the government's 4.0 policy to promote 10 targeted industries under the S-Curve and New S-Curve segments, which are considered as enablers of future growth, the TCEB won 217 events and supported the meetings and international exhibitions in accordance with the government's new economic model. The events are divided into MICE clusters based on 5 key industries as follows:

  • 18 events in the Food Agriculture & Biotech cluster (food processing industry, agriculture and bio-technology, biofuel sand biochemicals).
  •  58 events in the Health, Wellness & Bio Med cluster (the full medical industry range).
  • 41 events in the Smart Devices, Robotics and Mechatronic cluster (robotics industry, next-generation automotive, aerospace and logistics).
  • 29 events in Digital IOT & Convergence (smart electronics and digital).
  • 71 events in the Creative, Culture & High Value Services industry.

Thailand is today a hub of MICE business in Southeast Asia connecting to ASEAN and CLMV markets. The Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) will help enhance the competitiveness of MICE industry in the global arena. 

According to the strategic plan for 2019 fiscal year, the TCEB set 3 key goals: 

(1)  To generate revenue and develop the economy with an emphasis on earning revenue from MICE events to boost the national economy. Asian MICE remains the key MICE market while Europe, United States and Oceania are the second-tier market. The TCEB will support event bidding with a focus on regional and international events especially those in the targeted industries following the government's 4.0 policy, namely next-generation automotive, smart electronics, high-income tourism and medical tourism, efficient agriculture and biotechnology, food innovation, robotics, aerospace and logistics, biofuels and biochemicals, medical and healthcare, and digital. 

In addition, the bureau will organize road shows, sales missions, one-on-one meetings and familiarization trips, upgrade mega events, develop the Thai quality MICE brand in both the domestic and international markets as well as manage digital media to promote sales and image of Thailand's MICE.

(2) To develop the country with innovations. The TCEB continuously supports entrepreneurs to receive ISO and Thailand MICE Venue Standard while development of personnel capabilities is promoted through international MICE programs and sustainable MICE management. The bureau has developed a digital service and supported the organizers in adopting digital technology for the events. Moreover, the bureau is studying the setting up of a One-Stop Service for the MICE industry. Finally, organizational efficiency will be developed comparable to the international system.

(3) To distribute income and prosperity. The TCEB will upgrade events in MICE Cities, and promote marketing activities along with road shows in CLMV (Cambodia, Lao, Myanmar, Vietnam)/GMS (Greater Mekong Sub-region) and SEZ (Special Economic Zone). The bureau promotes domestic MICE events by supporting the meetings and exhibitions in major cities and secondary cities, EEC areas and other potential cities which are capable of accommodating MICE events. In addition, the bureau is developing a database of the MICE industry in 3 regions as information for the study and those interested.

Highlight domestic and international MICE events in 2019 fiscal year include:

  • World Jasmine Rice Festival in Roi Et between 23-25 November 2018
  • Isaan Technology Expo in Nakhon Ratchasima between 20-24 December 2018, the Society for Incentive Travel Excellence.
  • Future Energy Asia 2018 between 12-14 December 2018   
  • SITE Global Conference between 11-13 January 2018
  • IEE PES T&D (Transmission & Distribution) 2019 (Energy) between 19-23 March 2019, the first international conference and exhibition about electrical and energy sector to be held in the Asia-Pacific Region.   
  • Pro-AV (The Professional Audio Visual), the global audio visual systems or InfoComm Southeast Asia 2019 held between 15-17 May 2019.
  • 86th UFI Global Congress 2019 between 6-9 November 2019, the largest exhibition industry trade show.

In addition, the TCEB is placing great emphasis on co-creation or integration with associations, government agencies and various organizations. This would change the TCEB's role from marketing supporter to facilitator, developer, a leader of creative ideas and business partner in parallel with the development of standards and innovations, as well as supporting MICE operators to increase competitiveness. In addition to maintaining existing strategic partners, the bureau will identify new partners in line with Thailand's MICE industry development strategy based on the global brand campaign "Thailand: Redefine Your Business Events".

"According to the overall operating plan, the TCEB expects that Thailand will welcome a total of 35,982,000 MICE travelers, contributing revenue of about 221.5 billion to the country. Among them are 1,320,000 international MICE visitors, generating revenue of 100.5 billion and 34,662,000 domestic MICE visitors, earning revenue of 121 billion, Mr.Chiruit concluded.

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For further information please contact: Corporate Communications Department, Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (Public Organization)   

Ms Parichat Svetasreni  Tel: +66 2 694 6009   Email: parichat_s@tceb.or.th 

Ms Paniyada Mulalin     Tel: +66 2 694 6091   Email: paniyada_m@tceb.or.th

a publicist : Ms.Arpaporn (A) 089 788 4868, Ms.Thittaya (Jang) 094 323 5641, Mr.Sorasak (Earth) 089 406 5544