THAILAND: The Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau and the Seoul Tourism Organization recently announced a plan to expand their MICE cooperation framework to encompass the educational arena. The two universities of Seoul- Kyung Hee University and Hallym University of Graduate Studies signed a MoU with TCEB and Seoul Tourism Organization (STO) to establish a bilateral ‘Academic Exchange Program. The purpose is to establish an inclusive foundation in Thailand and Seoul for creating future MICE leaders in Asia.

BANGKOK: The 20th anniversary of the IT&CMA business events tradeshow will be held in Bangkok this year from March 2-4. This will be the 11th year the event has been held in Bangkok.

UNITED STATES: A strong debut from IMEX America last year has resulted in significant increases from exhibitors and buyers for this year’s trade show when it is held at Sands Expo in Las Vegas from October 9 to 11. Of contracts so far received, 20 per cent of those who exhibited at the first show are returning with even bigger booths. Of these, 50 per cent of exhibitors have more than doubled the space they will be taking at the show. In addition, and another sign that the show has captured both the imagination and the business appetite of the business tourism market, almost 40 new booths are set to join the line-up so far at IMEX America, with more expected in the next two months. Of the 40 to-date many are new US suppliers and destinations, while the space increases have been seen from right across the world. Hotel groups have also responded strongly meaning that the hotel section of the trade show floor will also be noticeably bigger and more varied.
UAE: Following the announcement that Emirates is launching an Adelaide service it has been revealed that the company now employs more than 5000 Australians. Nationally, Emirates Airline & Group employs more than 3500 Australians, while more than 1200 operate out of its Dubai hub. These workers fill roles across a wide range of areas and industries, including Emirates Airline, Emirates SkyCargo, Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa, Toll dnata, Alpha, Mindpearl and Emirates Leisure Retail.

AUCKLAND: Auckland has once again been named one of the world’s most liveable cities, jumping four places this year to ninth. The result was secured in London magazine Monocle’s urban quality of life survey. Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) manager Jason Hill says this international recognition of Auckland as an outstanding city has been reflected in continued growth in guest nights. “We are thrilled to be seeing sustained visitor growth from both our domestic and international markets, and to receive this acknowledgement from our second biggest market is fantastic,” he said. Auckland recorded an 8.5 per cent increase in guest nights for the year ended April 2012, which bucked the national trend of a decline in guest nights. International guest nights were up 11.3 per cent to more than 2.8 million and domestic guest nights grew by 6.4 per cent to 3.5 million.

SINGAPORE: SWIFT, a member-owned cooperative through which the financial world conducts its business operations with speed, certainty and confidence, has chosen Singapore and Marina Bay Sands (MBS) as the venue for Sibos 2015. Sibos is a premium event that brings the global financial services and technology communities together, which contributes significantly to the economy of the host city and country. The estimated economic worth of Sibos is placed at $100 million. Last held in Singapore in 2003, Sibos then attracted 3108 delegates. This figure is expected to more than double in 2015 at 7000 delegates, who are senior leaders from across the globe. From these delegates, 43 per cent hold senior positions in the financial industry. There will be 200 speakers, 90 sessions, and eight parallel streams focusing on key topics such as regulations, global shifts and technology.


New Flights

Daniel McPherson and Kay Russell Gold Coast Marathon In readiness for its new flights from Brisbane to Hawaii, the Hawaiian Airlines team was recently becoming acquainted with the sunshine state by taking part in the Gold Coast Marathon.  The event gave travel enthusiasts the ultimate winter workout motivation – the chance to get fit while helping raise funds for the Cancer Council Queensland. Hawaiian Airlines contributed to the fundraising effort by donating two return flights to Honolulu as a raffle prize.  The prize also included seven nights at the Aqua Lotus Resort, zipline tours and two entries into the Honolulu Marathon in December – the perfect reward for helping a great cause. Hawaiian Airlines flies daily from Sydney to Honolulu and from November 28 will operate three weekly flights from Brisbane.
Pictured is actor Daniel McPherson and Kay Russell, Hawaiian Airlines’ business development manager for Queensland, Western Australia and Northern Territory.