If a 2014 global research from American Express Meetings and Events prediction were to hold true, the Asia Pacific region is due to experience a slight decline in meetings. While the decline is expected to send alarm bells ringing, American Express Meetings and Events director for JAPA, Danielle Puceta speaks of tighter controls over spend and activity expected of a maturing MICE marketplace.

Ms Puceta highlighted meeting planners may increasingly conduct meetings closer to home, as they come under greater pressure to justify spend. Translation: Destinations and its service providers will need to demonstrate more value for events more likely to fall into their trajectory.

In this edition, we’ve chosen to put Japan on our cover due to its impressive scorecard this year (Pages 16). Back in business after the disasters of 2011, Tokyo has secured the bid to host the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, while other cities helped fill the events calendar for the next few years. With quality, modern facilities and endless unconventional venues for incentives, Japan shares plans to strengthen its MICE offering in the years leading up to the Olympics.

Just as mature MICE markets remain popular, we take a look at why destinations deemed less sophisticated can in fact appeal to incentive groups (Page 34). And while Asia is thriving with business, unethical practices amongst MICE suppliers can affect the sustainability of the industry (Page 26).

As a year comes to a close and another begins, my team and I would like to thank you for your unwavering support, and continue to look forward to your feedback.

Kristie Thong
Editor/Associate Publisher



• Andrew Chan, ACI HR Solutions
• Damion Breust, Barclays
• Daniel Chua, AONIA
• Danielle Puceta, American Express Business Travel
• David Lim, Everest Motivation
• Maureen O’Crowley, Seoul Tourism Organization
• Nino Grüttke, Messe Berlin
• Janet Tan-Collis, SACEOS
• Selina Chavry, Pacific World