No surprise there — in contrast to the U.S., China’s economy is booming, projected to grow by 10 percent in 2011, and the meeting industry is expected to increase by 20 percent. The six-year-old show, organized by Reed Exhibitions and sponsored by the China National Tourism Administration and the Beijing Municipal Commission of Tourism, also expanded significantly: the number of hosted buyers increased by 27 percent, as the number of exhibitors grew more than 20 percent.
Also up were the number of education sessions. Many were packed, particularly those discussing the Chinese perspective on domestic and international meetings, where the appetite for knowledge to help professionalize the industry was palpable.
The meeting also marked the first time that the CMP exam was administered in China — 43 people took the written examination. “There were 40 this year,” said Craig Moyes, group exhibition director for Reed Travel Exhibitions. “Next year there might be 400.”