The Hague has become one of the top 50 international congress destinations among European cities, according to the ranking of The International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA). It is also one of the top 100 most attractive congress cities in the world.
This ranking supports the findings of the research published earlier this year by NBTC Holland Marketing, which revealed that in 2016 The Hague hosted 135 international congresses - an increase of 50% in comparison to 2014 and 2015.
“The congress industry is extremely important for The Hague and we are pleased with the new ranking,” emphasized Karsten Klein, The Hague's deputy mayor for Economic Affairs. "It proves that associations highly appreciate The Hague’s international business climate, established knowledge infrastructure, top-quality hotels and our renewed World Forum Convention Centre."
Next to securing great rankings in both listings, The Hague also reports that in 2016 a total number of 13139 delegates visited the city - the highest number of congress participants that the city has welcomed to date. The increase of more than 2000 delegates compared to 2015 demonstrates the outstanding and continuously improving event infrastructure of the city.
“In 2016 we launched our new brand, we sharpened our positioning, and - more importantly - we worked hard on streamlining the city’s network of partners that services the event industry,” said Ms Nienke van der Malen – van der Horst, the director of The Hague Convention Bureau (THCB).
“This approach has generated very positive outcomes, and we will continue making strategic improvements to ensure that The Hague becomes more and more attractive as a destination for international congresses.”
In 2017 and 2018 The Hague will host high-profile and high-impact congresses such as the International Congress on Child Abuse and Neglect, the Cyber Security Week, and the much-anticipated One Young World Summit.
Worldwide, The Hague is ranked 85th together with Frankfurt, leaving behind congress cities such as Moscow, Bordeaux and Liverpool.
Every year the ICCA rankings are published as an important benchmark study in the association event industry worldwide. More than 200 European and almost 400 international cities are evaluated by the number of meetings and events organised in a destination each year.