Boom times for Singapore as business events return

The destination had a strong showing for MICE in 2022 and major events are lined up for 2023.

Photo Credit: Adobe Stock/Tomas

Singapore has revealed that the destination enjoyed a strong year for MICE in 2022, boosted by major international shows and sporting events.

Visitor numbers are expected to double in 2023, with tourism on track for full recovery by 2024, returning to pre-pandemic levels, which is likely to fuel interest in Singapore as a MICE destination.

MICE recovery was driven by a number of major international events taking place across 2022, including Food and Hotel Asia – Food & Beverage and Food and Hotel Asia – HoReCa, which took place as two dedicated trade shows for the first time, ITB Asia, and Singapore Fintech Festival, which attracted a record turnout from over 115 countries.

STB also secured new events like FIND: Design Fair Asia as well as Global Health Security Conference 2022 and the 14th World Stroke Congress.

Sporting events also recovered strongly, including The Formula 1 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix 2022, held after a two-year hiatus and which recorded a record number of attendees, with 302,000 at the event. The Tour de France Prudential Singapore Criterium was held in Singapore for the first time in its Southeast Asian debut.

On the hotel front, figures also point to an encouraging 2022. They show that from April to December 2022, the Average Occupancy Rate (AOR) was 79.1%, compared to 87.3% recorded in the same period in 2019 and a number of hotels with facilities for MICE groups opened.

The outlook for 2023 is positive too, and STB says it will continue to attract those MICE events that are in demand, such as the Herbalife APAC Extravaganza 2023 and the 25th World Congress of Dermatology 2023.

Keith Tan, chief executive at STB, said: “Our 2022 tourism performance underscores Singapore’s appeal as a leading business and leisure destination for post-pandemic travellers. To sustain our growth in 2023 and beyond, we will expand our partnerships, build up a rich year-round calendar of events, ramp up investment in new and refreshed products and experiences, and continue to support industry efforts to build the capabilities they need to meet consumer demands.”

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