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 May 12, 2014
ICCA: International Association Meeting Sector Continues Strong Growth; Paris New Number One City

 With the release of the 2013 Top 20 Rankings for countries and cities, ICCA is reporting another year of continued strength in the international association meetings market.

11,685 regularly occurring association events which rotate between at least three countries were identified by ICCA members and ICCA's in-house research team as having taken place during 2013, 535 more than identified a year previously.

Table 1: ICCA country and city ranking measured by number of meetings organised in 2013

Rank, Country, #Meetings

1 U.S.A. - 829
2 Germany - 722
3 Spain - 562
4 France - 527
5 United Kingdom - 525
6 Italy - 447
7 Japan - 342
8 China-P.R. - 340
9 Brazil - 315
10 Netherlands - 302
11 Canada - 290
12 Republic of Korea - 260
13 Portugal - 249
14 Austria - 244
15 Sweden - 238
16 Australia - 231
17 Argentina - 223
18 Turkey - 221
19 Belgium - 214
20 Switzerland - 205

Rank, City, #Meetings

1 Paris - 204
2 Madrid - 186
3 Vienna - 182
4 Barcelona - 179
5 Berlin - 178
6 Singapore - 175
7 London - 166
8 Istanbul - 146
9 Lisbon - 125
10 Seoul - 125
11 Prague - 121
12 Amsterdam - 120
13 Dublin - 114
14 Buenos Aires - 113
15 Brussels - 111
16 Copenhagen - 109
17 Budapest - 106
18 Beijing - 105
19 Rome - 99
20 Switzerland - 205
20 Bangkok - 93
20 Stockholm - 93
20 Sydney, NSW - 93

2013 Top 10 Countries: Some Small Changes

The top 10 country ranking is made up of the same countries as last year, but some countries switched places. The U.S.A., Germany and Spain remain respectively 1st, 2nd and 3rd. The gap between U.S.A. and Germany has become significantly smaller though; from a difference of 184 meetings in 2012 to 107 in 2013. France and United Kingdom have switched places: France is now 4th and United Kingdom 5th. Italy remains 6th. Japan climbs one place to number 7 and China-P.R. climbs two places to number 8, at the cost of Brazil, dropping from 7th to 9th place, and The Netherlands, dropping one place to number 10.

2013 Top 10 Cities: Paris New Number One

Vienna, which has been the number one city in the ICCA rankings each year since 2005, has lost its 1st place to Paris, which was 2nd last year and previously shared 1st place with Vienna in 2008. Madrid, 4th in 2012 is now 2nd and Vienna 3rd. Barcelona climbs one place to 4th and Berlin moves from 3rd to 5th place. Singapore remains 6th and London fell from a shared 6th place to 7th. Istanbul climbs one place to 8th and Lisbon and Seoul, both newcomers in the top 10, share 9th place.

ICCA CEO Martin Sirk: "It shouldn't be surprising that our 2013 figures have demonstrated the strength of the international association meetings sector, since the overall picture for our industry is significantly better than has been the case for quite some time. But it should be remembered that this is a sector that has shown significant growth in every single year since the financial crisis hit the world economy in 2008. The international association meetings sector is a solid, reliable performer, in good times and bad, and the longer term trends are the most critically important factors when preparing strategic plans and investment decisions. I am convinced that every serious meetings destination, internationally ambitious venue, and forward-thinking meetings management company should include international associations in their marketing and development strategies."

"A Modern History of International Association Meetings 1963-2012"

As part of ICCA's 50 year anniversary a special 50 year edition of its international association meetings Statistics Report "A modern history of international association meetings 1963-2012" has been published in September 2013. This report shows that the number of regularly-occurring, internationally-rotating association meetings is increasing by 100 per cent every 10 years, and has been consistently doing so for the last half century, with no signs of a slowdown. The report is publicly available on


ICCA is the most global meetings industry association and the leader in the international association meetings sector. ICCA represents the main specialists in organising, transporting, and accommodating international meetings and events, and comprises almost 1,000 member companies and organisations in over 90 countries worldwide. ICCA specialises in the international association meetings sector, offering unrivalled data, communication channels, and business development opportunities. For more information visit

ICCA's International Association Meetings Tables are published every year. To be included, meetings must be held on a regular basis, have at least 50 delegates, and rotate between at least three countries.

The full ICCA statistics report is only available to ICCA members. Comprehensive rankings for all countries and cities will be released to non-ICCA members and the media end of June.