30 May 2020 
2 May 2019

Exhibitions generate €275 billion globally

For the first time, the total global economic impact of exhibitions has been calculated. With a total output of €275 ($325) billion in business sales annually, the exhibition sector is on a par with sectors such as machine tools or medical and surgical equipment.

Photo: UFIPhoto: UFI
UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, worked with Oxford Economics to produce the ‘Global Economic Impact of Exhibitions’ report, which was also supported by SISO (Society of Independent Show Organisers).

UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, worked with Oxford Economics to produce the ‘Global Economic Impact of Exhibitions’ report, which was also supported by SISO (Society of Independent Show Organisers). “This truly is a first for our industry,” says UFI President Craig Newman. “This new data will support us when we talk to stakeholders about our industry, especially as it’s broken down into the direct, measurable economic impact per exhibiting company – right down to the economic value of every single square metre of venue exhibition space. And on top of that, it makes me proud to work for our industry, knowing that we are securing over three million jobs.”

Based on UFI exhibition metrics, the model developed by Oxford Economics provides results for the world and also regional data for Africa, the Asia-Pacific, Central and South America, Europe, the Middle East and North America.

The report shows the far-reaching impact of the exhibition sector, which generates €68.7 ($81.1) billion in direct GDP and contributes a total economic impact of €275 ($325) billion. This ranks the sector as the 56th largest economy in the world, larger than those of countries such as Hungary, Kuwait, Sri Lanka, and Ecuador.

In 2018, approximately 32,000 exhibitions directly involved 303 million visitors and over 4.5 million exhibitors across more than 180 countries. The total impact of €167 (US$198) billion in global GDP includes the direct spending and jobs that are specifically involved in planning and producing exhibitions, and for participants and exhibitors to travel to exhibitions, as well as other exhibition-related spending. Following the ISO definitions, an exhibition, show or fair is defined as an event where products, services or information are displayed and disseminated. Exhibitions differ from conferences, conventions, seminars or other business and consumer events, and exclude flea markets and street markets.

Europe was the largest market in terms of visitors, welcoming 112 million in 2018. This represents 37% of global exhibition visitors in 2018. North America ranked second, with 91 million visitors, followed by the Asia-Pacific with nearly 82 million visitors.

In terms of total GDP, North America ranked first with over €78.2 ($92.3) billion of total GDP attributable to the exhibitions sector. This accounts for nearly 47% of the sector’s global impact. Europe followed with €48.6 ($57.3) billion of total GDP, representing 29% of the sector’s global impact.

Overall, exhibitions globally generated €60,700 ($71,700) of total sales per exhibiting company and €7,900 of total sales per square metre ($870 per square foot) of venue gross indoor exhibition space.



More news about "Exhibition industry":

2 July 2018

Exhibition Industry Alliance renewed

EMECA, the European Major Exhibition Center Association, and UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, have agreed to extend the European Exhibition Industry Alliance (EEIA), which aims to represent the interests of the exhibition industry to EU stakeholders in Brussels. (more…)

2 March 2018

Exhibition industry expects solid growth in 2018

The 20th edition of UFI's Global Barometer for the exhibition industry reports strong results for 2017 and very good prospects for 2018 in terms of turnover growth. The top business issues remain the state of the economy in home markets, and global economic development - the first one rising in importance, the latter one's importance declining. (more…)

2 March 2018

“Data Security” white paper for exhibition industry

The International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE) released a 17-page report titled, Personally Identifiable Information - Data Security, providing a thorough overview of various aspects and considerations regarding personally identifiable information (PII) for the non-technical reader. (more…)

10 August 2017

Exhibition industry: more focus on home markets

UFI's Global Barometer shows a growing industry, currently refocussing and advancing on digital transformation: Globally, the majority of exhibition companies report increases in turnover and rising profits for 2017. Companies are putting more focus on the economies in their respective home markets. (more…)

28 February 2017

Exhibition industry on further growth worldwide

According to the 18th UFI Global Barometer, the exhibition industry remains geared for continued growth in 2017 - despite an ongoing slowdown in global economic growth, and a decline in open trade promoters on the international stage. (more…)

5 September 2019

New UFI report on the Trade Fair Industry in Asia

UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, released the 15th edition of the Trade Fair Industry in Asia annual report, covering 17 locales including Greater China and Southeast Asian markets, Australia, Cambodia, Japan, Korea, India, Myanmar and Pakistan. (more…)

2 May 2019

Global Exhibitions Day on 5 June

The 4th edition of the Global Exhibitions Day (GED19) will to be held on 5 June 2019. GED19 is actively supported by 41 partner associations and UFI the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry. UFI is inviting exhibition industry professionals all over the world to get involved and participate in this campaign to promote the industry. (more…)

2 May 2019

Latin American Conference 2020 in Buenos Aires

The 2nd Latin American Conference will take place in the last week of April 2020 at the new Centro de Convenciones de Buenos Aires, Argentina. The event will be hosted by La Rural and colocated with the 17th Expoeventos Latinoamerica, one of the major exhibition industry events in the region. (more…)

3 April 2019

European Conference with two special events

UFI is pleased to announce that two special events will take place ahead of this year’s European Conference in Birmingham (UK). The first will focus on “Operations and Services” while the second will be all about “Digital Innovation”. (more…)


03/06/2020 - 04/06/2020 in Essen
Compounding World Expo
The international exhibition for plastics additives and compounding
03/06/2020 - 06/06/2020 in São Paulo
R+T South America
International Trade Show for Roller Shutters, Doors/Gates and Sun Protection Systems
03/06/2020 - 06/06/2020 in São Paulo
Glass South America
International Exhibition for Design and Technology for the Glass Industry
09/06/2020 - 12/06/2020 in Köln
International trade fair for the tire industry
09/06/2020 - 12/06/2020 in Bern
Suisse Public
12/06/2020 - 14/06/2020 in Berlin

Stay up-to-date: Subscribe to our exclusive newsletter and keep an eye on international trade fair business - free of charge, once per month.
Your email address:
© 2018 by Connex AG