Despite being gifted with gorgeous islands and incredibly diverse yet well-preserved culture, Indonesia is surprisingly still rather behind in the MICE industry. As one of the most exotic archipelago with so much to offer where its tourism has always been one of its driving forces, when it comes to international meeting industry, the country is so far behind its neighboring country, such as Malaysia.
However, that is about to change in the next few years. Since last year, Indonesia has shown positive progress under the new bureau. The Indonesian government was aware of the potential that the country has in store and the new trend in the industry involving Meetings, Incentives, Conventions, and Exhibition. For that reason, last year, the government created a bureau right under the country’s Tourism Ministry to handle everything related to MICE industry in Indonesia.
Indonesia Convention and Exhibition Bureau was specifically created in 2006 for the purpose of not only strengthening, but also enhancing the country’s own MICE services with the hope that Indonesia will be able to catch up in the globalized industry and eventually will also become one of the key destinations. The agenda was started with determining 16 cities to promote as an International MICE destinations in Indonesia.
So far there are only five regions which are deemed worthy of promoting – Jakarta, Bali, Bandung, Surabaya, and Special Region of Yogyakarta. This is not to say that other regions in the country are inferior to these five regions, however. The reason of why only these five cities are considered ready to be promoted to international level is largely due to the fact that they are the only cities which are equipped with appropriate infrastructures for MICE.
Yes, the capabilities to provide top-notch event services in Indonesia is indeed not the only aspect that is deemed important. Infrastructure is also so far on the top of the list. Without an adequate number of appropriate infrastructure, the city will most likely be unable to host international level events, and thus cannot be promoted to be one of the international MICE destinations in Indonesia.
While attracting international travelers is nothing new for the country, attracting specific type of visitors is another thing entirely. Indonesia Convention and Exhibition Bureau’s main focus is none other than attracting corporate visitors to come to the country and hosting the convention or conference, focusing on event management. The bureau has such a central role in the country’s MICE industry. They make promotional efforts in order to be able to place a bid on numerous international events.
To understand the magnitude of this rapid development, let’s take a look at the statistics from the World Tourism Organization. There are more than 1.1 billion trips being made worldwide, and at least 14% of said trips are categorized as business trips. On top of that, records also show that there are more than 83.16 million of trips related to various MICE events. The potential that our country’s tourism holds combined with serious effort from both government and industry practitioners such as booth and stand contractors, event organizers, exhibition organizers, event services companies, etc. result in a boost in our MICE industry.
Take Yogyakarta, for instance. This stunning cultural city has recently been kept busy. All thanks to the increasing number of MICE events held in the city. In the most recent events, the 11th International Congress of Tropical Pediatrics and Asian Youth Day attracted 539 delegates from more than 10 countries and 3,000 visitors from 22 countries respectively. More data also shows that Yogyakarta has held MICE events in total of 11,377 events with more than 841,711 participants all throughout 2015, and a total of 14,069 events with more than 951,127 participants all throughout 2016. While the data for this year hasn’t been released, we can imagine how much it will be in Jakarta, Surabaya, and Bali as the other main MICE destinations.
As of now, the city is focusing on moving up from the 12th position of popular MICE destination to the 8th position. With the growth of over 25%, it is not impossible for Yogyakarta along with Jakarta and Bali to be listed on the top 10 of the ICCA ranking.