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Australian business events industry grows 8 per cent

Updated study shows industry worth AUS$24.9bn (£15.5bn) to Australian economy in 2015/16

Pictured: the new International Convention Centre Sydney, which opened last year, has been hailed a game changer for the Australian business events industry

The Business Events Council of Australia (BECA) has released an update of its 2013/14 study on the value of the business events industry to Australia’s economy.

The key figures, commissioned from global research firm, Ernst & Young, show that in 2015/16, business events:

• contributed AUS$30.2 billion (£18.8bn) in direct expenditure, compared to AUS$28bn (£17.4bn) in 2013/14
• critically supported Australia’s GDP with a total economic contribution of AUS$24.9bn (£15.5bn), compared to AUS$23.1bn (£14.4bn) in the previous period, and
• provided 193,203 direct jobs, increasing from 179,357 in the previous period.

Matthew Hingerty, chair of BECA, said: “The study provides a compelling case of the direct and indirect impact on the Australian economy and demonstrates why governments and industry should continue to invest in the sector.”

While the report reveals the strength of the business events industry in Australia,  it found on an international level Australia is falling behind. Key assumptions reflect growth in local (2.7 per cent) and national (13 per cent) delegates, with a 3 per cent decline in international delegates.

“The business events sector is, at times, under-appreciated for the financial and non-financial benefits it delivers to the economy, including its role in enabling global and domestic trade,” said Hingerty. “It can be argued that business events are the mechanisms whereby new trade can be generated as market participants travel to meet each other, study the opportunities, confer, and exhibit their goods and services – further enhancing the Australian Government’s free trade agreements.

“The study reconfirms the business events sector’s dimension, influence and potential. However, the industry and governments must work together to leverage this great opportunity before us.”

BECA says it is considering future research needs of the industry.

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