Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions (MICE) tourism have emerged as a dynamic and rapidly evolving sector, both in India and across the globe. In recent years, this niche segment of the travel industry has witnessed substantial growth, transforming the way businesses organize and participate in events. The recent PM’s call for ‘Wed in India’ and the initiation of ‘I do’ movement by the Ministry of Tourism are positive steps to promote MICE tourism in India.
Trends across India
In India, MICE tourism has seen a considerable growth in recent years. The exhibition industry is rapidly growing at a rate of more than 8% over the past few years outpacing the GDP growth rate of the country. According to the Ministry of Tourism, India hosted over 6.9 million foreign tourists in 2019 for various events, conferences, and exhibitions. As per ICCA city and country rankings, India with 158 meetings (out of total 13,254 meetings) secured 28th rank. The MICE segment contributes significantly to the overall tourism industry, generating substantial revenue and boosting the local economy. Jio World Convention Center, Biswa Bangla Convention Center, Bharat Mandapam, Yashobhoomi, etc. in India are emerging as major MICE destinations, equipped with state-of-the-art infrastructure and world-class facilities.
The recent India G-20 Presidency recorded over 200 meetings across 56 cities, placing India on an international MICE landscape, showcasing robust infrastructure, cultural and national heritage internationally. The Ministry is working to take this momentum forward and place India as one of the leaders in MICE Tourism. The ‘National Strategy and Roadmap for MICE Industry’ is an appreciative enabling institutional framework that serves as a guiding document for the stakeholders. Additionally, State and city level MICE promotion Bureaus will facilitate the development of MICE industry in India. CII is actively engaging with the government and the industry fraternity to take this initiative forward through active stakeholder consultations and dialogues.
Current and Future Potential
The potential for MICE sector growth can be partially attributed to the pandemic that accelerated the adoption of virtual and hybrid events. Even as in-person gatherings resume, the integration of digital elements remains prevalent, allowing wider participation and enhancing the overall event experience. There is a growing emphasis on sustainable practices within the MICE tourism sector. Event organizers and venues are increasingly adopting eco-friendly initiatives, aligning with the global push towards responsible and green tourism. The integration of cutting-edge technologies, such as augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR), has transformed the MICE landscape. These technologies offer immersive experiences, making events more engaging and interactive. Future MICE events will witness a greater focus on customization and personalization, catering to the specific needs and preferences of participants. This trend is expected to enhance attendee satisfaction and overall event success.
The future of MICE tourism in India looks promising, driven by several factors. The government’s focus on infrastructure development, coupled with the promotion of India as a preferred MICE destination, is expected to attract a larger share of the global business events market. The e-Tourist Visa (e-TV) scheme has streamlined the visa application process for foreign participants, recent PM’s call for ‘Wed in India’ has set the stage for influx of one lakh crore back in the country. Additionally, the emergence of tier-II cities as MICE hubs is diversifying the landscape and creating new opportunities for industry. With a strategic approach and collaborative efforts from stakeholders, MICE tourism is poised to become a driving force for economic growth, knowledge exchange, and cultural integration on a global scale.
To know more about CII’s tourism related initiatives, visit the link: CII Tourism