For the second year in a row, Kigali has maintained second place as preferred city in Africa after Cape Town on International Congress and Convention Association rankings following a 2019 report released on 12thMay 2020. The same report shows that Rwanda has moved forward 2 positions attaining 3rdplace in Africa as preferred country in Africa after South Africa and Morocco.
ICCA ranks countries and cities that host association meetings and is the global association leader for the international meetings industry and specializes in the international associations meetings sector, offering unrivalled data, education, communication channels, business development and networking opportunities.
The ranking is based on the number of association meetings that take place on a regular basis (annually, biannually), rotating between at least three different countries and with a minimum of 50 participants.
Last year, Kigali hosted more than 32 association meetings that included several high-level conferences such as African Fine Coffee Conference and Exhibition (AFCCE) held in February 2019, AFI Global Policy Forum (GPF) hosted in September, the Global Conference and General assembly of the International Co-operative alliance (ICA) held in October, Annual Conference and General meeting of East Africa Law society (EALS) held in November, and International conference on HIV/AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA2019) held in December amongst others.
Commenting on the new ICCA ranking, the Chief Executive Officer of Rwanda Convention Bureau, Nelly Mukazayire said;
“We are excited to see Rwanda’s journey to becoming the top destination in Africa recognized, the results show that Kigali continues to be an attractive destination for international association meetings”. Mrs. Mukazayire further expressed that the ranking is proof that the efforts made by the industry and its partners work and only further encourages stakeholders to continue to position Rwanda as a preferred choice for Meetings and Events in Africa. “Now more than ever do we as a destination need to position ourselves to support the recovery of the sector, by applying our collective efforts to align with trends and measures that support us all during these challenging times” Mukazayire added.
With close collaboration between Government and the private sector, Rwanda continues to establish itself as a safe, secure MICE destination, due to an enabling environment, investment in world-class venues, ease of connectivity and open visa policy among others”
Tourism being the country’s largest foreign exchange earner, MICE Tourism aims to continue to play a significant role in its growth, bringing in 20% of all tourism revenues. In 2019, MICE tourism contributed USD $65 million and recorded 42,753 delegate visits with projections to see this contribution grow in coming years.