Come 2019, Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) will launch a new masterplan for several MICE cities in the country to focus more on their designation management, marketing and development.
The city profiles of Chiang Rai, Udon Thani, Phitsanulok, Songkhla, Surat Thani, Phetchaburi-Hua Hin-Cha-am and Nakhon Ratchasima have already been studied, according to Supawan Teerarat, senior vice president, strategic business development & innovation with TCEB.
The bureau will be “setting up a meeting and public hearing with private and public stakeholders in each of these cities” to assist them in the upgrading to become MICE-ready, Supawan revealed.
The strategy to increase the number of MICE-designated cities will be based on their level of readiness. There will be three classifications: International MICE City, Regional MICE City and Domestic MICE City.
Said Supawan: “Our goal is to groom them all to become International MICE Cities.”
When asked for an update on the five designated MICE cities, Supawan shared: “We are proud to say that after more than five years of engaging with these cities, they now understand how the MICE sector generates revenue to the destination, and some cities – Chiang Mai and Phuket – have included MICE activities in their strategic plan.
“For instance, Chiang Mai has allocated a budget to run MICE activities every year, and we are hoping other cities follow suit as this will confirm their long-term commitment to the MICE industry and TCEB.”
Last year, Chiang Mai welcomed 50,881 business events visitors, which generated a revenue of 4.7 billion baht (US$144 million). Meanwhile, the domestic market brought in 2.1 million visitors and generated 4.9 billion baht in revenue.
As Thailand is gifted with diverse destinations offering myriad attractions and strengths, TCEB hopes to designate more cities for business events. Aside from the aforementioned cities, others being assessed include Rayong and Prachuab Khiri Khan.
“Three more cities will be looked at next year – Ubon Ratchani, Nakorn Srithammarat and Kanchanaburi,” added Supawan. – additional reporting by Rachel AJ Lee