In its 10th annual edition, UFI’s “Report on the Trade Fair Industry in Asia” finds that net space at Asian trade fairs jumped by 6.6 percent in 2013, equaling about 17.3 million net square meters.
Current research shows that 17.38 million square meters of space was sold by exhibition organizers to their clients in Asia in 2013 – up from 16.31 million square meters in 2012. Of that total, more than 55 percent was sold in China – 9.72 million square meters of net space – equaling almost five times the space sold in Japan, Asia’s second largest trade fair market, at 1.97 million square meters.
For the fourth year in a row, growth was particularly strong in Southeast Asia. Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore all outperformed the regional average of 6.6 percent. The region’s fastest growing market in 2013 was Taiwan, where net space sold increased by nearly 14 percent.
“Our research reveals that last year, the trade fair industry in Asia grew faster than anytime since 2008, demonstrating once again how dynamic is the Asian market,” said Paul Woodward, managing director, UFI. “UFI is proud to have played a role in supporting that growth as our membership in Asia has increased by a factor of five in the past decade and we anticipate even more growth in the years ahead.”
Of the larger markets, China posted the fastest growth of 8 percent in 2013 – the largest increase since 2008. The other large markets grew more modestly last year. India’s market expanded by 5.4 percent, Hong Kong and Korea by 3.4 percent and Japan by just 2.3 percent.
Asia’s venue capacity will exceed 7 million square meters by the end of 2014, and the number of venues operating in Asia this year will hit 200 – up from the 100 venues that were in operation in 2004 when the first edition of this report was published.
In 2014, China will be home to 106 venues and 4.85 million square meters of gross indoor capacity, representing almost 70 percent of total capacity available in the region.
China will soon open three significant new venues – two in 2014 and one in 2015, adding more than 630,000 square meters to the market. The three new venues are located in Zhuhai, Tianjin and Shanghai, where the latter will become Asia’s largest exhibition venue.
The National (Shanghai) Center for Exhibition & Convention will feature 403,500 square meters of gross indoor space. This venue is likely to have a transformational effect on the Shanghai market in 2014 and 2015.