GEORGE TOWN, Dec 8 (Bernama) -- Business events (BE) and conferences in Penang is expected to return to the pre-pandemic level next year onwards, with the estimated economic impact (EEI) to reach RM1 billion in 2023.
Penang Convention and Exhibition Bureau (PCEB) chief executive officer Ashwin Gunasekeran said the last time Penang crossed the RM1 billion value was in 2019, adding that the BE sector was poised to grow further in 2020, if not for the COVID-19 pandemic.
“For the year 2023, PCEB is forecasting about 2,500 events with 260,000 delegates, generating RM1 billion in EEI.
"We are still compiling the figures for this year but it will definitely be much lesser than the projected figure next year," he told the media after the opening ceremony of the ‘BE @ Penang 2022’ conference here today.
Also present was Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.
Ashwin said that the BE industry is one of the contributors to Penang’s economic growth, and according to PCEB’s latest industry review, the state hosted 77 BEs in 2021 and generated RM14 million worth of EEI.
Meanwhile, Chow said BEs and conferences are already filling up the state’s calendar up to 2026.
“This is definitely a good rebound from the pandemic. For Penang, these conferences and events are mostly related to the medical devices as well as electrical and electronics industries," he added.
Meanwhile, commenting on the event today, Ashwin said the two-day conference will position Penang as the hub for knowledge exchange for the BE industry.
This year’s conference, themed "Be Forward", aimed to break down and further discuss the opportunities to level up BEs in Malaysia, while also allowing participants to gain industry knowledge about technology advancements in the sector.
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