Business events in Brisbane deliver $351 million boost

Published on : Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Australia’s Brisbane hosted more than 940 business events worth an estimated $351 million in economic impact in the 2018-19 financial year, recently released figures reveal. Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner said the Queensland Business Events Survey showed the meetings, incentives, conference and exhibition sector in Brisbane was enjoying incredible success.

Cr Schrinner said that 2018-19 saw 209,000 delegates attend a business event in Brisbane, delivering 579,986 delegate days – a 44% increase on the previous financial year. The business events sector is vital to Brisbane, boosting our economy, growing their knowledge sectors and supporting our accommodation, venue, hospitality and service providers.

The biennial Brisbane Truck Show always delivers a major economic boost, attracting over 34,000 visitors to the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre (BCEC) in May 2019 and generating an estimated $75 million in economic impact.


Brisbane’s world-leading research and expertise also secured international events including the Asia Pacific League of Associations for Rheumatology Congress with 1,500 delegates in April, and the Australasian Sonographers Association Annual Conference with 1,200 delegates in June.


Their success continued throughout 2019 with the Asia Pacific Cities Summit & Mayor’s Forum in July. This event attracted 1,400 government, business and emerging leaders from 140 cities for four days of talks on the innovation, mobility, liveability and sustainability of cities. Held in November 2019, the strategically important International Air Transport Association (IATA) Slot Conference brought together 1,200 representatives from international airlines and airports to plan future flight schedules.


Playing host to this conference gave us the opportunity to provide industry with a first-hand experience of Brisbane’s transformative growth and the mid-year opening of Brisbane Airport’s second runway, as they continue their focus on attracting new direct airline services.



The economic development board Brisbane Marketing worked with the State Government and Brisbane Airport Corporation to secure an AirAsia service from Bangkok (June 2019), Qantas services from San Francisco (Feb 2020) and Chicago (Apr 2020) and a Virgin service from Haneda, Tokyo (Mar 2020).



Brisbane Marketing’s General Manager of Business and Major Events, Juliet Alabaster, said the city sets itself apart with a Team Brisbane approach to building its visitor economy.



Their strategic partnerships with BCEC, all levels of government and industry trailblazers continue to produce successful bids and grow Brisbane’s profile as a leading business events destination.A wave of tourism infrastructure including the Howard Smith Wharves dining, entertainment and events precinct, new 4- and 5-star hotels and experiences has also played a huge part in our ability to attract conferences and incentive events.



Brisbane continues to break records with international and interstate visitation and spending at all-time highs, while BCEC enjoyed its most successful financial year ever and passenger numbers at Brisbane Airport during 2019 exceeded 24.1 million for the first time.





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