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HomeAustralia & N.ZealandUS$800 million worth of meetings business expected to change hands at AIME 2004

US$800 million worth of meetings business expected to change hands at AIME 2004

An estimated US$800 million worth of business is expected to change hands next week in Melbourne when AIME 2004, one of the largest…

An estimated US$800 million worth of business is expected to change hands next week in Melbourne when AIME 2004, one of the largest exhibitions in the world for the business events industry, opens at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre.

The 12th AsiaPacific Incentives and Meetings Expo will comprise a record 750 exhibitors from 40 countries. Next to Australia, Asian exhibitors will cover the most space, thanks to vastly increased tourism budgets aimed at negating business losses following SARS.

Thailand, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines, China and Vietnam will be competing with exhibitors from Australia and other countries, for millions of dollars of convention business on offer from more than 2,600 trade and Hosted Buyers, from 27 countries.

And while Asia will definitely make an impact at AIME, other international destinations and regions are also increasing their space, or exhibiting for the first time.

Argentina, Spain, Canada, Sultanate of Oman and New Zealand all have larger stands. New international exhibitors include Tourism Brunei, Gulf Air, Gulf Ventures, Vanuatu, Norfolk Island, Beijing Tourism Bureau, Kyoto Convention Bureau, Condor Travel Peru, Philippines Airlines and Edgewater Resort from the Cook Islands.

With recent industry surveys reporting increased optimism for business events in 2004 in Asia Pacific, Europe and the United States, AIME 2004 is set to once again provide a key forum for the industry to conduct international business in Australia, said AIME Exhibition Manager, Rosemarie Sama.

This year, AIME will host (fly and accommodate) up to 400 of the most important buyers from around the world. Hosted Buyers alone, are likely to account for an estimated at US$80 million of business, out of the total US$800 million on offer.

Melbourne Convention + Visitors Bureau (MCVB), the owner of AIME, said the event was also an excellent way to showcase the city of Melbourne to a worldwide audience. MCVB will be hosting functions and familiarizations for all Hosted Buyers.

AIME 2004 is at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre on 17 & 18 February. Entry is free. AIME website: www.aime.com.au

AIME 2004 is owned by MCVB, and is organized by Reed Travel Exhibitions (RTE), who organize 13 travel events worldwide, of which 4 are for the meetings and incentives sector.

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