IMEX Group issues findings from tenth Politicians Forum debate – Destinations urged to use report content to increase local political support

IMEX Group issues findings from tenth Politicians Forum debate – Destinations urged to use report content to increase local political support
The IMEX Group has today issued a public report on the findings of the IMEX Politicians Forum discussion held during IMEX in Frankfurt in May this year.

With meetings and business events integral to the development of knowledge-based economies and increasingly central to the prosperity and future growth of nations and cities around the world, the annual IMEX Politicians Forum in Frankfurt provides both a private and a public platform to review industry progress.

The latest report provides an overview of the days’ content, including the case studies and papers presented by Business Events Sydney, Bordeaux, the European Society of Cardiology, Excel – London, Germany, Mexico and San Diego.

Close to 130 participated in the Forum, including politicial representatives and industry leaders. This year’s special guest speaker was Sir Rocco Forte, Chairman of The Rocco Forte Hotels Group. The Forum’s keynote speaker was Nick de Bois, MP, Chair of the UK All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Events. 36 politicians and government officials from 16 countries also participated – the largest number to date. They represented: Australia, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, France, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Poland, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, South Africa, Sweden and the UK.

One high point was the participation of Gloria Guevara Manzo, State Secretary of Tourism, Mexico, and member of President Calderon’s cabinet. She spoke about her country’s continued growth and ambition. Now one of the world’s top 15 economies, 190 million tourists visited Mexico in 2011, almost 23 million of which were international travellers. Manzo explained that Mexico’s goal is to become one of the world’s top five destinations by 2018 and recognises that meetings, incentive travel and events have a part to play in reaching that target.

Together with its three partner associations (AIPC, JMIC and European Cities Marketing), the IMEX Group hopes that destinations and convention and visitor bureaus in particular will use the report to encourage further political engagement in – and understanding of – the industry among their local political representatives. Its findings also demonstrate how far the industry has developed over the past 10 years and how much more assertive, cohesive and informed it has become.

The IMEX Group furthered its commitment to industry development through political influence at IMEX America this year when it held the first ever Political Advocacy Forum in conjunction with partners, the US Travel Association. This Forum was attended by special guest, Mayor of Las Vegas, Carolyn Goodman, together with CEO of US Travel, Roger Dow and close to 100 participants and media took part. IMEX will further advance its advocacy efforts in 2013 through PCMA’s new Industry Business Forum for local leaders.

IMEX has also made a 3-minute informational video available for free industry download. The video explains the importance of lobbying at a local level and is designed to be viewed by destinations and local government representatives alike.

A full copy of the IMEX in Frankfurt Politicians Forum Report plus a shorter summary is available online.

The IMEX Politicians Forum in Frankfurt is co-organised by ECM (European Cities Marketing) and AIPC (International Association of Congress Centres) and held under the auspices of JMIC (Joint Meetings Industry Council). It is supported by the German Convention Bureau (GCB), the Frankfurt Convention Bureau, Messe Frankfurt, International Meetings Review, Brähler and Sixt.

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