November - December


TCEB Pushes Chiang Mai into an International MICE City

Working under a strategic guideline to develop Chiang Mai into a complete MICE City, TCEB collaborates with local communities and stakeholders.

Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau (Public Organization) or TCEB continues to promote MICE City as a mechanism that supports the Thai government's income distribution policy. Working under a strategic guideline to develop Chiang Mai into a complete MICE City in the northern region, TCEB collaborates with local communities and stakeholders to introduce Post-Tour activities for corporate travellers showcasing local lifestyle, historical and cultural attributes. In addition, the bureau joins hands with Co-op communities to promote their neighbourhoods as alternative venues for MICE activities and a platform to create opportunities for sustainable income distribution.

Mr. Chiruit Isarangkun Na Ayuthaya, President of TCEB, said that TCEB has been following the bureau's key principles in fostering cooperative partnership among the public, private, and community sectors in order to promote MICE industry into a key activity that drives the economy and generate revenues to local communities. According to the 12th National Economic and Social Development Plan (2018-2021), Strategy for Regional, Urban, and Economic Zone Development, the government aims to develop the northern region into a high-value creative economy. Also, in May, Chiang Mai became the first province in Thailandthat announced a provincial master plan for MICE development.

Chiang Mai features high potential in tourism and economic development. The province has a unique and outstanding identity with a number of natural and cultural attractions. According to a study conducted by the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA), Chiang Maihosted 20 international association meetings in 2016, which earned the city 2nd place among non-capital or second-tier municipalities in ASEAN. Meanwhile, in 2017, Chiang Mai welcomed 50,881 international MICE travellers generating 4,700.38 million baht in revenue, and 2,210,000 domestic MICE travellers generating 4,914.53 million baht in revenue.

This year, numbers of local MICE activities in Chiang Mai have been upgraded to an international level, expanding their formats as well as a scope of exhibitors and visitors to promote business opportunities for the province. Among those events held earlier this year include Chiang Mai Bloom 2018 which welcomed 183,569 visitors, and Lanna Expo which welcomed 253,504 visitors. Also, TCEB has been continuing to bid for more of international events to take place in Chiang Mai. Successful bids are such as World Robot Olympiad 2018 which was recently held in November this year with 10,000 visitors; Chiang Mai Design Week 2018 to take place in December with 400,000 visitors expected at the event; the Endoscopic and Laparoscopic Surgeons of Asia 2019 expected to attract 1,500 visitors; and the Route Asia 2020 expected to attract 1,200 visitors.

Under a vision "Chiang Mai The Splendid City of Culture and Destination for MICE in Asia", TCEB set key strategies for MICE development in Chiang Mai in four attributes: 1) Promoting public relations and marketing activities which target Asian MICE market; 2) Upgrading services, improving tourism products and creating opportunities for MICE activities by leveraging cultural capital; 3) Developing human resources to support MICE activities in local areas; and 4) Upgrading infrastructures to support MICE activities in Chiang Mai.

Within the development plan guiding key tasks towards achieving goals in promoting MICE as a tool for income distribution, six post-tour programs involved activities and services which reflect Chiang Mai's local lifestyle were developed. These routes are: (1) CSR and Ecotourism Route: The route promotes Mae Taeng Cooperative Limited, Doi Pha Hom Pok National Park, and On Tai Village. The latter was named as a model of Creative Industry Village (CIV), incorporating cultural resources and creativity to create value for its products and services. Visitors will get a chance to learn about the village lifestyle and gain hands-on experience in producing local products; (2) Historical and Cultural Route: The route promotes Baan Tawai - Chiang Mai's long-established community known for its handicraft, and encourage visitors to join the Ordination of Yang Na Tree Ceremony in Saraphi District as part of the environmental movement to protect 900 Yang Na trees line along the road between Chiang Mai City to Baan Pak Kong. Visitors will get a chance to learn about the production of the traditional style lanterns from artisans at Mueang Sat Luang Community; 3) Team Work Route: The route promotes a series of team building activities which also enhance brainstorming and knowledge sharing at the Huai Hong Khrai Royal Development Study Centre, Huay Tung Tao Reservoir, and Punpon Farm; (4) Adventure Route: The route showcases soft adventure activities amid beautiful nature at Chiang Mai's natural attractions such as Doi Pha Hom Pok National Park; (5) Thai Cuisine Route: The route showcases local gastronomy at Baan Hua Fai and Baan Dong Bang; and (6) Luxurious Activities Route: The route highlights unique and luxury experience for MICE travellers. Furthermore, in terms of the venue standard, Chiang Mai has 18 MICE venues and 51 meeting rooms certified by the Thailand MICE Venue Standard or TMVS.

Recently, TCEB joined hands with 35 Co-op Communities across the country to promote their neighbourhoods into alternative venues for MICE activities. The partnership supports the growth of the local economy and enhances community readiness by leveraging their creativity based on local identity and resources. At present, Co-op Communities in Chiang Mai ready for corporate's CSR activity are Mae Taeng Cooperative Limited and Doi Saket Agricultural Cooperative Limited.

"By enhancing activities such as educational trips to be conducted in local communities, helps to generate income to locals. A cooperative, acting as a cooperation centre, can gather local products such as foods, snacks or other processed agricultural products to promote to visitors. Meanwhile, community engagement, from the upstream to downstream, can support the development of Chiang Mai into a complete MICE City," said Mr. Chiruit.

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