The Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or Asean, was established on 8 August 1967 in Bangkok, Thailand, with the signing of the Asean Declaration by Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand. Since then, membership has expanded to include Brunei, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam. Its aims include accelerating economic growth, social progress and cultural development of its member states and the protection of regional peace and stability.
Onus on Arena to make impact
Thai tourism chiefs will be hoping Bangkok's Impact Arena will help win back Mice delegates to the city following political unrest on the streets earlier this year.
The exhibition and convention centre's Corporate Reward Programme allows clients to earn valuable redemption points that will help them reduce organising costs and enjoy various privileges, benefits and services. A four-star hotel is being built at the venue and is scheduled to be ready in the early part of next year. India and China are among the target markets for the Arena, which has a usable indoor space of more than 140,000 square metres.
Before the outbreak of protests earlier this year, Thailand had been rated the biggest trade fair market among the Association of Southeast Asian Nations grouping, according to a report by industry organisation UFI.
The report, based on a 2008 study, found that Thailand was ahead of all Asean countries in the number of trade exhibitions (71), space sold, average size of fair, estimated annualised revenue and average revenue per fair.
Compared with the whole of Asia, Thailand was in a competitive position in terms of estimated net square metres sold, among the mainland, Japan, Hong Kong, South Korea, India, Australia and Taiwan markets.