The key topic of the business agenda of the Russian Convention Bureau in 2021 was the presentation of the convention and exhibition industry as a safe communication channel and an effective tool for economic development.
«The strategy for the development of tourism in the Russian Federation for the period up to 2035 envisages an increase in the planned indicators of the export of tourism services from 8.9 billion US dollars to 28.6 billion US dollars. Business tourism, which is a derivative of the event industry, is one of the priority types of tourism and should also contribute to the achievement of the planned results, comments Anton Kobyakov, Adviser to the President of the Russian Federation. «National and regional convention bureaus act as coordinating bodies in the field of the event industry and business tourism, which promote the region in the foreign market, facilitate the attraction of events, thereby stimulating the flow of tourists.»
With the support of the Russian Convention Bureau, 5 applications for hosting international events were submitted in 2021. Taking into account the potential participation of more than 7000 people, the additional economic effect may exceed 1 billion rubles. It was also decided to hold the Annual Congress of the European Association for Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (EABCT) in Russia. The event will take place in Moscow in 2023 and 1,500 people are expected to attend. The bid was previously submitted by the RCB.
Alexander Stuglev, Chairman of the Board, Director of the Roscongress Foundation, Chairman of the Board of the Russian Convention Bureau, noted: «Today, humanity and state institutions have formed a framework that has become a new normality in terms of tourism safety and events. Therefore, all industries associated with publicity are subject to restrictions. The activities of the Russian Convention Bureau to support the event industry during this period, the active regional agenda and work in the industry committees position it as an industry integrator and lobbyist for the interests of the industry».
During the year, the Russian Convention Bureau took part with the industry agenda in the largest forums of the Roscongress Foundation, actively supported projects aimed at developing the event potential of Russian regions, took part in the Industrial Tourism Accelerator of the Agency for Strategic Initiatives, as well as in the work of specialized committees of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation. At the end of 2021, the RCB became a member of the Expert Council of the State Duma Committee on Tourism and Development of Tourism Infrastructure, which will actively promote the interests of the industry and contribute to the development of event and business tourism.
In 2021, the Russian Convention Bureau, together with leading industry associations and associations, took steps to support the domestic convention and exhibition industry. So, together with the leading industry associations, amendments to the recommendations for holding events were formulated and sent to the Government of the Russian Federation.
During 2021, the Russian Convention Bureau entered into strategic partnership agreements with regional offices and industry organizations and associations: the Government of the Stavropol Territory, the Public Relations Development Fund Region PR (FROS Region PR), Argument i Fakty JSC, Sportlive LLC «- the international organizer of the world series Challenge Family, Academy of the Future KIDSDEV.
As part of the implementation of its regional agenda, the Russian Convention Bureau continues to work on the project «Event Passport of the Region». The purpose of passports is to acquaint potential organizers and participants of events with the region, to present all the resources that it provides for the implementation of congress and exhibition projects. In 2021, the Russian Convention Bureau, in cooperation with regional structures, developed Event Passports of the Republic of Bashkortostan and the Republic of Tatarstan. You can get acquainted with the published Event passports, as well as information about the event potential of a number of regions, on the RCB Internet portal.
In 2021, the Russian Convention Bureau continued the «RCB Summer Academy» educational project a series of practical online seminars, which was launched in 2020 in cooperation with the R&C Market Research Company and with the support of the Roscongress Foundation. During this time, the Summer Academy gathered more than 600 listeners, and unique content on congress and exhibition activities with a clear practical focus was formed at the Academy site. The value of the course is also that it is free and all lectures are subsequently available on the YouTube channel of the RCB and in the EFEA + EL mobile application.
Summing up the year, CEO of the Russian Convention Bureau Sagid Zaremukov commented: «For the event industry around the world, the pandemic has brought a time of unprecedented struggle, but also accelerated learning and development. Virtual and hybrid meetings have evolved at the speed of light, external factors have led to the emergence of new creative solutions and formats of events. We had to question our understanding of what is normal and find ways to create new opportunities for ourselves in difficult circumstances. For the Russian Convention Bureau, 2021 has been a busy year, and we expect that the next year, 2022, will be even more active, and the resources and efforts that were invested during the period of the forced calm will allow us to move forward quickly. Within the framework of the Association, together with member companies of the Russian Convention Bureau, we will together look for new ways and formats of joint work».
Among the key tasks of the RCB for the development of the industry, Sagid Zaremukov also noted such areas as a project to create a network of regional congress bureaus, work on standardizing activities for companies in the convention and exhibition industry, shaping an international agenda taking into account new realities, as well as making legislative initiatives within the framework of work in the Expert Council of the Committee for Tourism and the Development of Tourism Infrastructure of the State Duma.
Also, the reporting results of the RCBs activities for 2021 will be presented at the Annual Meeting of the Russian Convention Bureau Association members on January 21, 2022 at the XI Europe + Asia Event Forum (EFEA) in St. Petersburg.