Japan has been selected to host two key gatherings of Iapco (International Association of Professional Congress Organisers) – a body whose members organise more than 8,500 meetings each year.
Organisers and destination marketers from both Osaka and Tokyo joined forces to secure the 2018, which was announced at Iapco’s annual meeting in Cape Town, South Africa.
Osaka will host Iapco’s council meetings before delegates gather in Tokyo for the organisation’s 49th Annual Meeting and General Assembly.
The successful bid is seen as spurring Japan’s rise as an international conference and incentive destination. Iapco members consist of more than 116 professional organisers, meeting planners and managers of international and national congresses, conventions and special events from 41 countries.
Iapco says it has seen significant growth in membership from the Asian region. In 2013 a Japanese member was elected to the council for the first time in 20 years. Tokyo 2018 will be the first time in 22 years that the IAPCO meeting will return to Asia (Bali, Indonesia 1996). It will be the second time Japan has hosted the event (Chiba, 1993).
The Japanese bid was organised by three Iapco members: Congress Corporation, Japan Convention Services and Convention Linkage, with support from Japan National Tourism Organisation, Tokyo Convention and Visitors Bureau and Osaka Convention and Tourism Bureau among others.
In 2015, Iapco reported that the 8,500-plus meetings organised by its members involved about 3 million delegates and had an economic impact worth about US$5.6 billion.