In order to fulfill its four main objectives the SECB has introduced a number of incentive schemes to encourage meeting and incentive business to the city state. BE (Business Events) in Singapore, launched in August 2006, enables Singapore’s meeting industry to competitively bid for and attract a critical mass of business events to sustain a robust business pipeline.
The scheme provides special funding to anchor more corporate meetings and incentive travel events to be held in Singapore over a period of three years. For conventions special funding is provided for new strategic conferences anchored in Singapore for at least three presentations.
BE in Singapore has already been instrumental in attracting a number of events, including the Asia Mining Congress 2007 (March 26-30, 2007); Herbalife Asia Pacific Extravaganza 2007 (July 19-22, 2007); BikeAsia (April 10-13, 2008); and the FDI World Dental Congress 2009 (September 2009).
To complement the business events incentive scheme, the STB has also embarked on initiatives to entice international organisations to establish their Asia-Pacific base in Singapore. There are currently 60 international organisations (IOs) in Singapore, such as Meeting Professionals International (MPI), International Air Transport Association (IATA), Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI), World Wildlife Fund International, and World Intellectual Property Office (WIPO). The scheme aims to encourage the domestic meeting industry to forge stronger partnerships so as to strengthen its marketing and business development presence globally.
The Strategic Clusters Approach is another STB business strategy, which entails close partnership with Singapore Inc. partners (industry-specific companies/associations, meeting industry players and government agencies), in growing, attracting and creating business events that are centred on the nation’s key economic drivers and initiatives.
Melissa Ow, assistant chief executive, business travel and MICE group, STB, believes that these initiatives, along with a more buoyant economy, will see Singapore rise in status as a meetings destination in 2010 and beyond. “All vital signs are pointing towards the return of business confidence in the Singapore business events sector, fuelled by the dynamic developments taking place within the tourism landscape. Leveraging on our sterling track record and sound business fundamentals, Singapore has secured a robust pipeline of business events, including key international association meetings, for the coming years,” she says.