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New Study Reveals Impact of Canadian Meetings on Economy


Canada’s meetings industry delivered $29.1 billion dollars in direct spending to the country’s economy in 2012, according to Meeting Professionals International Foundation Canada’s  (MPIFC) new study on the economic impact of meetings.

The Canadian Economic Impact Study (CEIS 3.0) also reveals that in 2012 over 502,000 meetings took place. In turn, these meetings supported more than 200,000 full-year jobs directly, and contributed $8.5 billion in  taxes and services fees to all levels of government.

The results of the study, which builds on the original CEIS conducted for the base year 2006, were released last week at National Meetings Industry Day (NMID) events held across the country. The study was produced by Maritz Research Canada, the Conference Board of Canada, Greenfield Services Inc., and the Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council  for Meeting Professionals International Foundation Canada’s (MPIFC). Its goal was to determine the economic significance of meetings, specifically business events, held in Canada for the base year 2012. 

Other key findings include:

  • business events in Canada attracted 35.3 million participants
  • participants accounted for just over $25 billion of the $29.1 billion in spending attributed to business events
  • meeting organizers received a total $7.8 billion to host business events in Canada ($4.5 billion from registration fees plus $3.3 billion from sponsors and other non-participants)
  • business events accounted for 1.5% of gross domestic product in 2012
  • DMOs and other financial partners contributed $140 million to attract business events to communities and cover costs associated with hosting events at various non-profit venues
  • including indirect and induced employment effects, business events supported more than 340,000 full-year jobs
  • one full-year job is supported for every $85,000 in direct spending on business events
  • the events were hosted in 2,176 venues (85% in hotels and resorts, 6% in purpose-built venues and 1% in in universities and colleges)
  • of the 585,439 events held 62.3% were corporate/business meetings, 19.8% were conferences/conventions/congresses, 11.8% were “other” meetings, 3.4% were incentive events and 2.6% were trade shows/business exhibitions

In addition, the new study includes a regional breakdown, showing how much the events industry contributes to provincial economies.

Gross provincial product by province are:

  • Ontario: $8.6 billion
  • Alberta: $5.5 billion
  • British Columbia: $4.3 billion
  • Quebec: $4.3 billion
  • Manitoba: $1.4 billion
  • Saskatchewan: $1.0 billion
  • Nova Scotia: $990 million
  • New Brunswick: $770 million
  • Newfoundland & Labrador: $390 million
  • Prince Edward Island: $106 million
  • Territories: $110 million

Click here to download an Executive Summary of CEIS 3.0.

Prior to NMID 2014, it was also announced that future CEIS research would be conducted under the auspices of the Business Events Industry Coalition of Canada (BEICC).

About CEIS 3.0: The study’s findings are based on in-depth survey responses from venue managers, meeting organizers, exhibitors, speakers, delegates, and destination marketing organizations. In total, more than 3,400 completed surveys were integrated into the analysis.



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