UK tops meetings league for Europe

The UK was the most popular European destination for international meetings in 2001 and second only to the US globally, according to figures just released from the Union of International Associations (UIA). The UK overtook France to hold an 11.5% share of the European meetings market, with France on 11.2%. Worldwide, the UK boasts a 6.6% share, trailing only behind the US, which hosted double the amount of international meetings. British Tourist Authority head of business tourism Adam Bates said: “These results endorse the superb range of meeting facilities, from purpose-built convention centres to unusual venues such as country-house hotels and castles, which sets Britain apart.” European city rankings saw London overtake Brussels to take second place behind Paris. Glasgow was highlighted as Europe’s fastest growing conference city. It has doubled its market share in Europe from 0.4% in 1997 to 0.8% in 2001. Greater Glasgow & Clyde Valley Tourist Board chief executive Eddie Friel said: “We are convinced initiatives such as the conference ambassadors programme, which pulls in 50% of our business and our online bid service will ensure awareness of Glasgow as a meetings destination of international stature.” The UIA collated data from more than 9,200 international meetings, taking place across 180 countries.

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