The board of the German Convention Bureau (GCB) has announced it will open a representative office in China. Together with the German National Tourist Board (GNTB) the GCB will further its work in Asia, one of its key target market. Information is available at www.germany-meetings.com
Frankfurt am Main, 10 December 2014. From 2015 the German Convention Bureau (GCB) will increase its presence in China and strengthen its focus on the key Asian market. The decision was confirmed by the GCB’s Board of Directors, chaired by Petra Hedorfer, Chief Executive Officer of the German National Tourist Board (GNTB).
China: a market with great potential for meetings and conventions
Germany and China are important economic partners. With a trading volume of over € 140 billion in 2013, Germany is by far China’s biggest trading partner in Europe. Likewise, China is Germany’s most important trading partner in Asia. There are currently around 900 Chinese companies operating in Germany, and over 5,000 German companies operating in China.
Business trips account for 40% of the total number of journeys to Germany from China (i.e. 964,000) – a level not seen in any other source market. This is set to increase further with more business trips expected from China’s meetings, conventions and incentive sector in particular: according to a prediction by the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA). Research indicated that China may well overtake the USA as the largest nation of business travellers.
The GCB’s office in Beijing, China, will build on this trend as Petra Hedorfer from the GNTB explains: “Following the launch of our activity around the theme ‘Germany as a business travel destination’, developing the GCB’s presence in another key market is the next important step. The new office will enable Germany to continue to benefit from the rapid developments in China”.
The representative office in China will be the second external representation office of the marketing organisation, following the launch of the GCB’s office in New York. The European markets are covered by the GCB’s headquarters in Frankfurt.
A large number of marketing activities in China
Matthias Schultze, Managing Director of the GCB, comments: “Having our own representative office in China provides clear advantages for members and partners of the GCB: proximity to the market will enable more intensive marketing work with a large number of new activities in which members can participate.”
The forthcoming marketing work will build on the current successful marketing activities which the GCB has carried out together with the GNTB in 2014. For example, in June a group of Chinese event planners visited Munich and Nuremberg’s meetings and events venues as well as inspiring excursion locations. The participants were also introduced to the local expertise of the automotive industry – an important sector for business co-operation between Germany and China which also provides opportunities for meetings and conventions.
The GCB’s activities in China also include online training about Germany as a destination for meetings and conventions – approximately 600 Chinese event planners have taken part in this since the beginning of September 2014. Furthermore, in November 2014 there were press meetings in Shanghai and Beijing.