The Mediterranean resort of Antalya has become the most popular sport for business meetings and conferences in the last year, followed by Istanbul, the Aegean provinces of Muğla and İzmir, and the capital city of Ankara, a fresh sector report has shown.
The M.I.C.E. (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions) sector constitutes around 30 percent of global tourism activities. Turkey has great potential to grow in this sector, according to the sector report by the Tourism Media Group after a survey with an attendance of 800 event organization companies.
Some 20 percent of the companies said their M.I.C.E. revenue is around 5 million euros, while 29.3 percent said their revenue was between 1-5 million euros. Some 21 percent of the companies’ revenues measured between 1-3 million euros and 3.8 percent around 50,000 euros, according to the study.
Around 7.2 percent of the participating companies said their M.I.C.E. income is over 10 million euros.
The companies usually prefer to organize events in May, while July is the least preferred month for business events, followed by October, April and September, according to the study.
The most popular spot for all types of business meetings is Antalya, followed by Istanbul, Muğla, İzmir and Ankara, said the study.
The companies surveyed consider the following factors most when organizing such events: Costs (54.3 percent), capacity and service quality (18.6 percent), location (12.3 percent) and accommodation services quality (4.9 percent).
Sector representatives named political uncertainty as the biggest problem for the sector, followed by the negative perception of Turkey abroad.
Turkey was ranked 44th in the competitiveness index among 141 countries, calculated through four main headings with 14 sub-categories, including enabling a touristic environment, enabling policy and environmental conditions, offering infrastructure and protecting natural and cultural resources, in the “The Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index 2015 Ranking” of the World Economic Forum.
Turkey ranked 14th on the list of best places for business travel in the report.
Istanbul first made the world’s “Top 10 Congress Destinations” in 2010 by hosting 109 congresses, according to the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA). Istanbul has solidified its place in “The World’s Top 10 Congress Destination” in 2014 with 130 congresses, according to the Istanbul Convention and Visitors’ Bureau website.
Antalya is one such city. In November 2014, when Antalya hosted the 53rd ICCA Congress, ICCA President Arnaldo Nadone said, “The 21st century Antalya is reinventing itself as a top quality, modern and international conference destination, building on its tremendous success over recent years in the leisure tourism industry,” as quoted by Oxford Business Group in a sector issue on Turkey.