INTERNATIONAL NEwswww.exhibitionnews.co.uk 13GERMANY AIDED BY TRADE DEALSGerman organiser and venue owner Messe Frankfurt is looking to continued regional expansion as Germany's trade with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) reaches ?17bn (£14.14bn). Bi-lateral trade ties between Germany and the countries of the GCC are expected to grow steadily due to mutual co-operation and engagement between both public and private sectors.Speaking at a press conference in Dubai marking the 10th anniversary of Messe Frankfurt's Middle East regional subsidiary EPOC Messe Frankfurt, German Parliamentary State Secretary of the Federal Ministry for Economy and Technology Hans-Joachim Otto explained Germany and the GCC are creating new-found export channels."Since 2004 we've had a strong strategic partnership in political terms, but now we have a strategic MIDDLE EASTUFI: GRowTh IS DETERIoRATINGThe positive growth experienced by exhibition organisers in 2010 and 2011 is expected to falter and decline in 2012, according to Paris-based international exhibition industry association UFI.The claim was made based on findings in UFI's 8th Global Exhibition Barometer Survey compiled last year to assess the impact of the economic downturn.UFI claims the most striking conclusion from the survey is that the positive growth recorded in 2010 and 2011 is now perceived as "deteriorating" with a majority of respondents in all regions confirming their business is being impacted by the economic crisis.But while gross turnover projections are now considered flat in Europe, the outlook remains solid in the Asia/Pacific region, while the Americas and the Middle East/Africa regions also remain unaffected.UFI MD Paul Woodward said the resilience of the exhibition industry will be key to enduring the economic slump. "In trying times our face-to-face media identifies new marketing opportunities to provide to our exhibitors and exhibition visitors," he said."We may even, in 10 years' time, look back on this era as one of positive developments."Operating profit results also appear to paint a more positive picture of the industry. Reports on annual profits show that almost half of exhibition companies foresee increases of more than 10 per cent in 2011.Continuing the constructive vein, 82 per cent of respondents plan positive strategic development programmes with almost 46 per cent venturing into virtual or live events. Just under half will enter new foreign markets.The next Global Exhibition Barometer Survey will be conducted by UFI in June 2012.EUROPEcES bREAkS 150,000 ATTEnDEE MARkFace-to-face meetings helped the International Consumer Electronics show attract more than 153,000 attendees, according to the show organiser's chief executive.This year's Las Vegas event was the biggest in the show's 44-year history, with more than 153,000 (unaudited) attendees, up from 149,000 last year. The 2012 CEs drew 3,100 exhibitors displaying 20,000 new products. "There is no question that the speed of the introduction of electronics has changed," Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) chief executive Gary shapiro said.USSInGEX JOInS FORcES WITH FIERA MILAnO singapore venue and organiser singex has confirmed its joint venture with Fiera Milano will see more global events introduced in Asia as the two leading exhibition and conference organisers join forces.singex and Fiera Milano struck a formal partnership to create and own turnkey events in the global MICE arena, a partnership that has already resulted in integrated care and rehabilitation engineering industry event RehabTech Asia, which runs at singex from 27 February to 1 March 2013.The partnership is now hoped to attract interest and attention from organisers and other industry players from Asia, Europe, the UsA and south America.SInGAPOREpartnership in economic terms as well," he told EN.Trade volumes between the GCC and Germany, one of the world's leading exporting nations, have more than doubled over the last decade, according to figures released by the Arab German Chamber of Commerce and Industry. In 2010 trade between the two was worth ?16.98bn, elevating the GCC's status as one of the leading export markets for German products. The UAE imported ?7.5bn of goods from Germany last year.