Opportunities for the Association Market in the Latin American and Caribbean region

The association sector has seen a significant growth in the Latin American and Caribbean region, from 255 associations represented at the beginning of 2000 to 620 active representations in 2019. This has enabled the continent to attract 1,379 academic meetings during 2018 based on the latest ICCA data. This has had a positive impact in the continent’s economy and GDP of USD 20.6 billion, creating more than 494,000 jobs and greater opportunities for knowledge transfer, according to research by the Events Industry Council. ICCA has been instrumental in supporting this growth since the opening of its regional office in Montevideo, Uruguay in 2003, deploying numerous activities to advance the association meetings market in the years since then.

Since 2014, ICCA has begun to engage with the regional association market on a much deeper level, creating various events to support the continuous professionalisation of the supply chain and working on specific procedures that have impacted directly on the engagement of association leaders in the region.

Associations key to regional growth

Associations present a huge opportunity for the Latin America and the Caribbean market. Based on ICCA’s previous Statistics Reports and regional surveys, 90% of associations are made up of voluntary leadership with no infrastructure, and only 10% of these associations have staff that is meant to manage the association, their products and events. ICCA, together with their Association Relationship Partners, have created special platforms across the continent where association leaders can improve their internal procedures and connect with key suppliers for the development of strong collaborations.

Our main goal is to keep moving forward communicating the importance of this industry and the key role of the knowledge economy and increase the level of understanding about the roles of local Convention Bureaus, Tourism Boards, PCOs and DMCs. We aim to develop a regional strategy that will enable the creation of new collaboration structures for the development of new scientific fields and subjects across Latin America and the Caribbean. Seventeen countries are committed to this cause and will keep working together with association leaders during 2019 and beyond.

If you have any queries please email Santiago Gonzalez, ICCA Regional Director Latin America and Caribbean.