MPI Foundation Study: Meetings Boost Canadian Economy

Despite the global economic downturn, meetings and events are continuing to create jobs, generate tax revenue and grow the Canadian economy, suggests a new study by the Meeting Professionals International (MPI) Foundation.

An update to MPI Foundation's 2006 Canadian Economic Impact Study (CEIS), the 2007-2008 CEIS Update concluded that the economic contributions of meetings and events activity in Canada at the end of 2008—after the recession had already begun—were slightly higher than those in 2006, despite a change in economic conditions.

The 2007-2008 CEIS Update found that the meetings industry:

• Generated more than $71 billion a year in industry output.
• Produced more than 673,000 meetings a year with an average of 70 million annual participants.
• Generated more than $14 billion in annual tax revenues for all levels of government.
• Created the equivalent of more than 550,000 full-time jobs a year.

Although the recession caused a 3.4 percent decline in the number of meetings in 2008, versus 2007, that number was still slightly higher—0.3 percent higher—than in 2006.

"Nearly double Canada's population attends meetings annually," MPI Foundation Canadian Council Chairman Joe Nishi said in a statement. "The CEIS unequivocally proves that the meeting industry is paramount to the face-to-face interactions that drive business success throughout Canada."

Added Ken Ross, senior research associate for Maritz Research, which conducted MPI Foundation's CEIS update, "The fact that we see relatively stable attendance figures, over a three-year period, speaks to the continuing importance of meetings activity, for both participants and the businesses that hold meetings."

For a copy of the full CEIS update, visit www.mpiweb.org/ceis.