HKECIA exhibition survey reaffirms vitality of Hong Kong as Asia’s trading hub
23 June 2016

HKECIA exhibition survey reaffirms vitality of Hong Kong as Asia’s trading hub

(Hong Kong, 23 June 2016)   The Hong Kong Exhibition & Convention Industry Association (HKECIA) today announced the results of its annual exhibition survey for the year 2015.  The survey, which presents a valuable snapshot of the state of the Hong Kong exhibition industry, revealed a positive year for the industry in 2015.  The total number of companies choosing to exhibit in Hong Kong rose slightly, following strong attendance from Mainland China and International exhibitors.  At the same time, visitor numbers rose by almost 13% over 2014, led by a return of Hong Kong visitors and a solid rise in visitors from China.

Given the social and economic uncertainties of 2015 and their wider effects on the Hong Kong economy, the survey indicates that the exhibition industry remains robust.  Hong Kong clearly remains a favoured destination for exhibitors and visitors alike, and continues to build on its wide reputation as the Trade Fair Capital of Asia.

The survey was based on the results of questionnaires sent to 89 “trade” and “trade & consumer” exhibitions utilising 2,000 sqm of floor space or above.  Responses from 77 “trade” and “trade and consumer” exhibitions were received. Purely “consumer” exhibitions were not included in the results.

In 2015, the number of companies choosing to exhibit in Hong Kong rose to 67,019, from 66,164 the previous year, a relatively modest rise of 1.29%.  Although this figure was moderated by a downturn in Hong Kong exhibiting companies, Regional, International and Mainland China exhibiting compaines all showed increases.  Healthy growth of 6.02% in International exhibiting companies and 8.40% in Mainland China exhibiting companies were highlights of the survey.

Visitor numbers showed slightly different but similarly positive trends.  Despite the previously noted downturn in Hong Kong exhibiting companies, the number of Hong Kong-based visitors jumped by an impressive 19.78%, followed by good growth in Mainland China visitor numbers at 9.36%.  Meanwhile, Regional and International visitor numbers each recorded minor dips after particularly strong growth the previous year.  In total, visitor numbers for the year broke the two million mark and recorded strong overall growth of 12.92%.

After a drop the previous year, in 2015 net meterage occupied by exhibitors rose again by 2.59%, reaching 920,903 sqm.  Growth in net meterage is generally a sign of business optimism, and this was reflected too in the approximate stand rental revenues for the year, which rose by 5.31% over 2014.

Chairman of the HKECIA, Mr Stuart Bailey, said that the survey results were heartening for the industry and for Hong Kong, too. “When we see exhibiting company numbers, visitor numbers, net square meterage occupied by exhibiting companies and stand rental revenue all achieving positive growth,” he noted, “we can be confident that the exhibition industry in Hong Kong is on the right track. This is especially the case when times are tight, as they have been for the past couple of years.”

Of special note is the fact that exhibiting companies from outside Hong Kong increased strongly, indicating international confidence in the trade platforms that Hong Kong is able to provide for both buyers and sellers, and the spending power that can be harnessed here.  That is supported by the equivalent rises in visitors from both Hong Kong and Mainland China.

In fact, exhibition activities in terms of number of exhibitors and visitors actually outperformed tourist arrivals in 2015. “These are results that strongly reaffirm Hong Kong’s leading position and unique advantages as Trade Fair Capital of Asia,” said Mr Bailey. “Through these exhibition activities, the city continues to act as one of the world’s most important sourcing hubs”.

The 2015 exhibition survey is just one of the important tasks undertaken by the HKECIA, an organisation made up of representatives from across the exhibition and convention industries. To celebrate the 26th anniversary of the Association, on 8 June 2016 an anniversary dinner was held at the HKCEC, attended by over 340 members and guests. Mr Greg So, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development of HKSAR Government, was Guest of Honour on the occasion.

The HKECIA also organised the Global Exhibitions Day Conference on 8 June 2016, in support of the first ever Global Exhibitions Day, driven by UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, and the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) to highlight the exhibition industry’s benefits for the economy and the fun of working in the industry.  Over 130 HKECIA members and non-members attended the Global Exhibitions Day Conference with the theme of China’s Belt & Road Initiative. The new initiative proposed by the PRC government aims to connect Asia, Europe and Africa to promote economic co-operation among countries along the five Belt and Road routes.

Mr Gregory So, Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, HKSAR Government (fourth from left in front row) as the guest of honour, had a group photo with Mr Stuart Bailey, Chairman of the HKECIA (fourth from right in front row) and newly elected members of HKECIA Executive Committee at the 26th Annual Dinner of the Association held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre on 8 June.

Over 130 participants attended the Global Exhibitions Day Conference on 8 June.

Over 340 HKECIA members and guests attended the HKECIA 26th anniversary dinner at the HKCEC on 8 June.

Notes to editors:

1.  The HKECIA survey covered number of exhibiting companies, number of visitors, and space occupied at major ‘trade’ and ‘trade and consumer’ exhibitions of over 2,000 sqm held in Hong Kong from January to December 2015.
2. The HKECIA distributed the questionnaire to 56 organising companies which ran 137 exhibitions in Hong Kong across the calendar year. Out of these 137 exhibitions, 89 were ‘trade’ and ‘trade and consumer’ exhibitions while the remaining 48 were consumer shows. Figures stated in this media release are calculated from 77 completed questionnaires from ‘trade’ and ‘trade and consumer’ exhibitions.
3. ‘Regional’ in the Survey refers to Australia, New Zealand & South Pacific, North Asia, South Asia and South East Asia. ‘International’ refers to Europe, The Americas, Africa and Middle East.
4. Attendance figures are counted in terms of number of visits, i.e. if the same person attends exhibitions held concurrently at two different venues, this is counted as two visits.

About the Hong Kong Exhibition and Convention Industry Association

The Hong Kong Exhibition and Convention Industry Association (HKECIA) was established in 1990 to promote Hong Kong as a world-class exhibition and conference destination and the trade fair capital of Asia Pacific. It works to represent the interests of all members involved in the exhibition and convention industries, and provides a unified voice in dealing with the government, legislative and statutory bodies, the media and public organisations, on all matters associate with the role of the exhibition and convention industry in Hong Kong’s economy. In addition, it offers training and educational programmes, and collects, analyses and distributes information and statistics relating to the industry. Currently, HKECIA has 106 members including exhibition organisers, venue managers and operators, contractors, hotels, and travel agents.

HKECIA is a member of UFI – The Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, and AFECA – The Asian Federation of Exhibition and Convention Associations



Diversified Communications Hong Kong LLC  (Mr Stuart Bailey)



Global Sources  (Ms Wendy Lai)

 Executive Vice



AMC (Exhibits) Ltd  (Mr Adolph Chan)

 Vice Chairman


CP Exhibition – China Promotion Ltd  ( Mr Andrew Kay)

 Vice Chairman


Schenker Int’l (HK) Ltd  (Mr Thomas Lau)

 Hon. Treasurer


Coastal International Exhibition Co Ltd  (Ms Brenda Yau)

 Hon. Secretary


Adsale Exhibition Services Ltd  (Mr Stanley Chu)

Executive Committee  Member


AsiaWorld-Expo Management Limited  (Mr H W Lau)

Executive Committee Member


Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd  (Ms Winnie Wong)

Executive Committee Member


Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Centre (Management) Ltd 

(Ms Monica Lee-Muller)

Executive Committee Member


Hong Kong Exhibition Services Ltd  (Mr Daniel Cheung)

Executive Committee Member


Hong Kong Tourism Board  (Mr Kenneth Wong)

Executive Committee Member


Hong Kong Trade Development Council  (Mr Raymond Yip)

Executive Committee Member


Mega Expo (Hong Kong) Limited  (Mr Henry Fong)

Executive Committee   Member


Pico International (HK) Ltd  (Mr. Steven Fang)

Executive Committee Member


TKS Exhibition Services Ltd  (Mr KS Tong)

Executive Committee Member


UBM Asia Ltd  (Mr Michael Duck)

Executive Committee Member


Ungerboeck Systems International Inc  (Mr Alan Wong)

Executive Committee Member

For further enquiries, please contact:

Ms Alexandra Seto

Association Manager

Hong Kong Exhibition & Convention Industry Association