SINGAPORE took in a record high $4 billion in tourism receipts (TR) from business events and conventions in 2006.
This figure, which accounts for 35 per cent of the total tourism takings bodes well for the Business Travel, Meetings, Incentive travel, Conventions and Exhibitions (BTMICE) industry here.
Last year's record high figures were bolstered by key events like the International Monetary Fund and World Bank meetings. This year, Singapore has already welcomed some 16,000 delegates for the Herbalife meetings held last month, and in October 2008, some 10,000 are expected for travel trade show ITB Asia.
Setting a higher target, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) aims to raise the contribution of the BTMICE sector to $10.5 billion while maintaining its overall proportionate share of total TR.
The new goals were announced last night by Minister for Trade and Industry Lim Hng Kiang, who was the guest-of-honour at the gala event for the inaugural Singapore Business Events Awards.
Held at the Ritz-Carlton Millenia, the event recognised industry players for their "exemplary business and service excellence, creativity and innovation across the different segments of the MICE industry", said STB.
Seven awards in four categories were handed out by the STB, and the recipients ranged from Professional Conference Organisers (PCO), Professional Exhibition Organisers (PEO), Destination Management Companies (DMC), venues, freight forwarders and other related companies.
Mr Aloysius Arlando, Assistant Chief Executive, Business Travel and MICE Group, STB, said: "The winners of the Awards will serve as torch-bearers for the Singapore and regional MICE industry, setting the bar for future award recipients and inspiring excellence in the industry. Their contributions will help to raise Singapore's profile as a premier MICE destination"
The winners were selected out of 21 finalists who were selected by a judging panel consisting of 16 industry experts, association and academic leaders, and representatives from the corporate sector.
The awards are initiated by the Singapore Exhibition and Convention Bureau (SECB), a group of the Singapore Tourism Board (STB), and the lead agency in championing the interests and development of the business events industry.