THAILAND Convention and Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) introduced a range of incentives for regional meeting planners yesterday at the launch of its Thailand CONNECT brand, which is focused on driving MICE business from within the ASEAN region.
While Thailand’s MICE sector wants more done to support a recovery from traditional high-yield markets in Europe and the US, the bureau is bound by government policy to build business from within the region, said Supawan Teerarat, TCEB’s vice president for strategic and business development.
“Our aim is to support ASE- AN in the run up to the launch of the AEC (ASEAN Economic Community in 2015),” Supawan told TTG Asia e-Daily.
“We want to focus on making Thailand the (key) connection for ASEAN’s MICE industry.
“(Down the line) we are also planning to promote Thailand as a premium MICE destination (for groups with significant budgets), which will be more global,” she said.
TCEB’s budget for 2014 is 900 million baht (US$28.7 million), about 10 per cent higher than the previous fiscal year that ended last month. All promotional activities during the year will be spearheaded under the Thailand CONNECT brand.
About 25 per cent of the bureau’s budget has been allocated for subsidies, of which an initial 10 million baht has been set aside for new incentives introduced under the campaign.
For meetings and incentives, 200,000 baht is given to events with more than 200 international delegates spending a minimum of five nights in the country, with at least one night in a location other than the host city.
For exhibitions with 15 or more participants from Bay of Bengal Initiative for Multi-Sectoral Technical and Economic Co-operation nations, which include Bangladesh, India, Myanmar and Sri Lanka, or ASEAN+6 nations, business matching for groups is provided. In addition, a subsidy of US$150 per person will be granted, provided each delegate has at least three business-matching appointments with Thai companies.
Conventions groups stand to benefit from promotional and public relations support within ASEAN+6 countries as well as Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau.