Report: More Meetings for the Middle East

Buyers in the Middle East are planning to organize more meetings in 2012, and many also are planning to increase their budgets, finds the latest Global Meetings Industry Research Report for the Gulf, Middle East and North Africa region, which was released today at Reed Travel Exhibitions' (RTE) Gulf Incentive, Business Travel & Meetings (GIBTM) exhibition.

According to the report, 48.2 percent of Middle East buyers and 47.2 percent of global buyers said they organized more meetings in the last 12 months compared to the previous year, with another 64.5 percent and 56.4 percent, respectively, saying they plan to organize still more meetings this year. Similarly, 53.7 percent of Middle East buyers and another 46.4 percent of global buyers said they plan to increase their budgets in the next 12 months. Finally, 52.9 percent of Middle East buyers and 46.8 percent of global buyers reported an increase in attendees at their meetings during the past 12 months.

Other key findings:

• In 2011, 58.5 percent of events organized by buyers were conventions and congresses.

• The top 10 countries for Middle East buyers during the past 12 months were the United Arab Emirates (Abu Dhabi and Dubai), Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Egypt, Turkey, Thailand, Jordan, India and Malaysia.

• In the next 12 months, Middle East buyers see growth in India, Thailand, Malaysia, Turkey, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Maldives, France, Japan and the United Kingdom.

• The top 10 countries for Global buyers during the past 12 months were the United Arab Emirates, the United States, China, Italy, France, the United Kingdom, Spain, India and Germany.

• In the next 12 months, global buyers see growth in India, the United States, Singapore, Thailand, Italy, the United Kingdom, France, China, Germany and Macao.

• The top 10 industry sectors for Middle East events are oil and gas, pharmaceutical, Finance and Banking, Training and Education, Electronics and Communications, construction and engineering, hospitality, food and tobacco, IT and computing, manufacturing, and transport/retail/automotive/cosmetics.

• The top client types in the Middle East are corporate, government-owned enterprise, NGOs, government/nonprofit, associations, agencies and consultants.

To view the full Global Meetings Industry Research Report for the Gulf, Middle East and North Africa region, visit www.gibtm.com.