page 1
page 2
page 3
page 4
page 5
page 6
page 7
page 8
page 9
page 10
page 11
page 12
page 13
page 14
page 15
page 16
page 17
page 18
page 19
page 20
page 21
page 22
page 23
page 24
page 25
page 26
page 27
page 28
page 29
page 30
page 31
page 32
page 33
page 34
page 35
page 36
page 37
page 38
page 39
page 40
page 41
page 42
page 43
page 44
page 45
page 46
page 47
page 48
page 49
page 50
page 51
page 52
page 53
page 54
page 55
page 56
page 57
page 58
page 59
page 60
page 61
page 62
page 63
page 64
page 65
page 66
page 67
page 68
page 69
page 70
page 71
page 72
page 73
page 74
page 75
page 76
page 77
page 78
page 79
page 80
page 81
page 82
page 83
page 84
page 85
page 86
page 87
page 88
page 89
page 90
page 91
page 92
page 93
page 94
page 95
page 96
page 97
page 98
page 99
page 100
page 101
page 102
page 103
page 104
page 105
page 106
page 107
page 108
page 109
page 110

TurkeyISSUE 65 / ConfErEnCE & MEEtIngS World / 67Europe and Asia's meeting crossroadsStraddlIng EaSt and WESt, tUrkEy haS long bEEn a MEEtIngS MECCa WIth CloSE tIES to ItS nEIghboUrS In thE MIddlE EaSt and Strong aMbItIonS to bE part of EUropEurkey has a split personality. As a Eurasian country, it sits with 97 per cent of its area in Asia and the rest in Europe. It is a democratic, Muslim country with strong trading with the Middle East and former USSR states. However, it has become increasingly integrated with the West through membership in NATO and the G-20 and is in talks to become an European Union member. Turkey's economy expanded at a rate of 11 per cent in the first quarter of the year and investment in this emerging country is favourable with a market-friendly government that has increased in popularity since it came into power in 2002. This compares to a debt-ridden Euro zone and the politically-instable Middle East. And market confidence is reflected in its meetings industry. For the latest International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) country rankings, Turkey was 20th with 160 qualifying meetings, five places above its 2009 place. The shining star is Istanbul, which shot up 10 places in the city rankings to 7th thanks, for the most, to increased destination marketing and expanded facilities says the Istanbul Convention and Visitors Bureau. WordS Sarah O'DOnnell below: hagia Sofia Mosque at night, IstanbulTIf the world was a single country, Istanbul would be the capital of itnapOleOn BOnaparte

Turkey68 / CONFERENCE & MEETINGS WORLD / ISSUE 65Of Turkey's congresses are hosted in Istanbul MELIS HANCI, DEPUTY DIRECTOR AT VIP DMC 80%The city has seven convention centres with 70,000 bedrooms. Hilton has plans for 11 new hotels in Turkey in 2011 and there are 42 other hotels set to be finished within two years in Istanbul. "Meetings of up to 30,000 easily can be held here," said Deputy Director at destination management company (DMC) VIP DMC, Melis Hanci.A recent convention development is the Istanbul Congress Center, which has a 3,000-delegate capacity and opened in 2009 with the World Bank IMF Summit. The attraction for many in hosting an event in Turkey is its historic past and not its new infrastructure. "Many historical monuments have been transformed into meeting facilities. A gala dinner for 2,000 delegates can be held in the world's oldest bazaar with authentic Ottoman cuisine", said the Sales and Marketing Manager for DMC ODS Turkey, Gaye Ertan. Istanbul CVB has ambitious plans to get into the top five ICCA rankings in the next five years. "Istanbul has become a rising destination for association meetings, but it also attracts incentives too," said its GM, Elif Balci Fisunoglu. "We are bidding for the 2014 AIDS Conference for 23,000 visitors." Recent big ticket events the country has hosted include the NATO Ministers Conference and World Water Forum with 25,000 delegates. "In recent years Turkey has hosted several high-profile international Top: Aspendos Theatre, Antalya meetings and we are starting to see that the positive feedback from organisers has attracted us new business," said Marketing Manager for professional conference organiser Scala Mice, Tulay Korkmaz. Hanci said around 80 per cent of congresses in Turkey are hosted in Istanbul, but the Ministry and Culture and Tourism are keen on developing conference tourism in Mersin, Izmir, Konya and Bursa. Ankara, the capital, is already a popular choice. "Turkey has a strategic location for multinationals. Delegates coming from both east and west can meet in the middle," added Hanci. ICCA has chosen Antalya for its 2014 congress for 2,000 delegates. The coastal town beat Houston, Texas and Monterrey to host the 53rd congress. The Director for the Antalya Convention Bureau, A. Sinan Inan, said the area has hosted some 40 international congress and incentive groups in 2010: "We offer organisers all-inclusive packages, which are particularly attractive to Russians." Meeting Professionals International has also seen its potential by forming a new Turkish club, which has 31 members with plans to increase this to 75 by end of June 2012. "All its members in Turkey believe in the need and benefit of forming a club," said President, Handan Boyce.As Turkey's meetings industry ups its conference credentials it could once again be the centre of the world. Robin Lokerman, Executive VP at The MCI Group: "MCI has seen strong growth in Asia and IBM 2010 has close to 100 delegates from outside of Europe. It was therefore fi tting to hold IBM in Istanbul, situated on two continents. With its new infrastructure, the city has become a major meeting destination and we will come back for many client events." Michel Neijmann, Managing Partner at K2 Conference and Event Management: "The Turkish meetings industry is growing. Many new and improved infrastructure projects are underway. This, with more direct fl ights, has won us many fi rst-time events. Many who have visited certain European cities several times."Ali Erdem, Director of Operations for Expologist: "Turkish-based associations have raised their game in the international arena and are lobbying to host events in their home country. The Government has also increased its support for bids as part of its national strategy and this resulted in Turkey increasing its meetings profi le."Organiser perspective on Turkey as an events destination: