ICCA is pleased to announce the return of our annual Country – and City – Rankings for the year 2022 after an absence of two years. The publication of the rankings coincides with the World Health Organization’s recent declaration that COVID-19 no longer qualifies as a global emergency, thereby emphasising the return to normalcy for the association meetings industry. The Netherlands are in 8th place, one before Belgium (9th). Brussels is however doing much better than Amsterdam on the city list, meaning other Dutch cities have been doing well.
The top 5 countries is: USA, Spain, Italy, Germany and France. The city top 5 is: Vienna, Lisbon, Paris, Barcelona, Prague. Rotterdam is 36, Leuven 43, Gent 49, Antwerp 78, Utrecht 84.
Back to normal?
At the end of 2022, ICCA made the proactive decision to revert to normal rankings again based on the observation that approximately 85% of all meetings were held in-person. However, they do recognise that certain countries and territories were still working within the confines of COVID-19 restrictions.
‘In a joint effort with our dedicated members, ICCA’s Research team identified over 10,500 meetings of which some 9,000 meetings were held in-person, being either unaffected by COVID-19 or held in a hybrid format. As the association meetings industry is still catching up to the numbers of the last pre-pandemic year (13,254 meetings in 2019), we conducted a brief country and city comparative analysis based on rankings rather than number of meetings. In addition, we will provide context to in-person versus planned meetings showing how these statistics can be best utilised.
ICCA CEO, Senthil Gopinath: “This is tremendous undertaking by our team, one that is most welcomed by our members because the ICCA Country – and City – Rankings always generates huge industry interest. It’s heartening to see the drive towards in-person meetings is once more very strong and we predict this trend will grow throughout the coming year.”
ICCA strongly believes that statistics exist to tell a story, and therefore we offer our members various tools to do this in a comprehensive way. There is not a single country where at least one planned meeting was affected by the pandemic in 2022. The ICCA Database displays the status of each meeting, and in the relevant cases, shows the reasoning behind the organiser’s decision not to run a meeting as in-person.’
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