Singapore's MICE Industry is Poised for a Sharp Recovery with a Strong Event Pipeline

14th Sep, 2022

The city-state is set to welcome a bullish return of MICE and business travel on the back of strong booking of large-scale meetings and events, launch of the refreshed INSPIRE Global 2.0 incentive programme and a concerted sustainability drive.

The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is seeing strong bookings for business events in 2022 and 2023 which has resulted in a major boost for its enhanced incentive programme for international MICE groups. The organisation expects a full recovery of the MICE industry within two to three years: Singapore hosted more than 200 events and some 49,000 delegates in 2021, and in the first three months of this year alone recorded more than 150 events and 37,000 delegates. For the rest of the year, the number is expected to increase with at least 66 more international events on the books.

As part of this upturn, STB offers the In Singapore Incentives & Rewards (INSPIRE) Global 2.0 programme, offering qualifying MICE groups a selection of around 80 complimentary experiences that delegates can enjoy in Singapore - an increase from 54 experiences that were introduced under the first iteration of the programme. The breadth and depth of INSPIRE Global 2.0's unique and exciting experiences meet the diverse needs of different meetings and incentive groups, from unique dining experiences, yoga wellness centres and perfumery attractions to new retail categories and private shopping experiences.

Reinforcing this focus, STB offers various support schemes such as Business Events in Singapore (BEiS) - which supports key event costs for qualifying MICE events - and the Singapore MICE Advantage Programme (SMAP) 3.0 - which provides eco-friendly transport options, eco-tourism experiences and sustainability-focused initiatives, promoting a seamless and environmentally-conscious MICE experience in Singapore.

Robust pipeline of business events in 2022 and beyond

The solid pipeline of events that Singapore has managed to anchor in 2022 and beyond reflects event organisers' unwavering confidence in the country's fundamentals, highlighted by its vibrant business culture, excellent infrastructure, stable government, and stellar track record in hosting high-quality events. Global Professional Exhibition Organisers (PEOs) are also expanding their teams and presence in the region by anchoring new events in the city-state - MMI Asia and dmg Asia events, for example, have increased their staff strength to handle the anticipated growth of new events in physical, digital and hybrid formats.

2022 will see the long-awaited return of international events including the World Cities Summit 2022 (31 July – 3 August 2022); AIJA 60th International Young Lawyers Congress (22 - 27 August 2022); FIND: Design Fair Asia (22 – 24 September 2022); the Milken Institute Asia Summit 2022 (28 -30 September 2022); the World Stroke Congress 2022 (26 – 29 October 2022), the IUFOST World Congress of Food Science and Technology 2022 (31 October – 3 November 2022), and the 7th World One Health Congress 2022 (7 – 11 November 2022).

Beyond 2022, Singapore has also secured rights to host Gastech Exhibition & Conference in 2023, Worldchefs Congress and Expo in 2024, and the 110th Lions Clubs International Convention in 2028 – all of which are landmark events in the industry’s calendar.

Singapore's sustainable tourism drive: empowering green meetings and events

In February 2021, the Singapore government unveiled the Singapore Green Plan 2030, a cross-sectoral move to advance Singapore's national sustainable development agenda and to achieve net zero by or around mid-century. The plan outlines ambitious and concrete goals for the next decade, reinforcing Singapore's commitments under the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement.

Since travellers are increasingly demanding more sustainable options, STB has taken this opportunity to put its own green travel and events strategy into practice by moving forward with more sustainable and conscious operations. Accordingly, the Tourism Sustainability Programme was created to support tourism businesses' sustainability journeys at all stages of their development, equipping them to build their manpower capabilities and develop innovative solutions to power the travel industry. A vision developed for Singapore to build a sustainable tourism sector where great experiences come in small footprints.

Singapore’s sustainability journey is also underline by the country’s recent participation in the Global Destination Sustainability Index (GDS-Index) to benchmark Singapore’s social and environmental performance against other destinations. Singapore also hosted Ecosperity in June this year, which returns for its 8th run, addressing issues on accelerating the energy revolution, decarbonising heavy industries, and financing the green transition in Asia.

Furthermore, STB together with American Express Global Business Travel (Amex GBT) has launched a new white paper - "Ready, Get Set, Go Green!" - which aims to analyse the key trends in green meetings and events, the role played by the destination and sustainable approaches to take in the event planning. This document builds on new trends of clients demanding more sustainable and conscious options when planning corporate events. The paper also highlights Singapore's commitment to support and empower event planners and organisers with practical tips on how to make their meetings and events more environmentally friendly.

A green meetings destination will need to undertake these environmental issues in line with its supplier network in order to fully consolidate these sustainability objectives. This is what many of the hotels and venues in Singapore are ensuring in areas such as energy conservation and efficiency - Sands Expo & Convention Centre, Singapore's first carbon neutral MICE venue; Resorts World Sentosa, with its best-in-class efficient waste management system; - and use of sustainable local food sources - PARKROYAL COLLECTION Marina Bay with its urban farm-to-table concept.

In partnership with the local MICE industry and community, Singapore continues to stay ahead as a top MICE city and vibrant destination – one that leads positive change, inspires and turn possibilities into realities.

Plan your meetings and events in Singapore now. Find out more at VisitSingapore/MICE

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