Top managers of exhibition industry discussed priorities of its further development at 5pEXPO

24 / 10 / 2023

The 13th International Forum of the Exhibition Industry 5pEXPO 2023 and the 9th Russian Conference on Exhibition, Fair and Congress Activities have opened at EXPOCENTRE Fairgrounds. 

The event is organised by EXPOCENTRE AO and the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The partners of 5pEXPO and the conference programme are RUEF the Russian Union of Exhibitions and Fairs, World Trade Center PAO, the Russian Convention Bureau, NAOM the National Association of Event Organisers, the Exhibition Research Center R&C,, the exeDrive Acceleration Platform for Marketing Experts, and Komsomolskaya Pravda Publishing House AO.

The opening of the forum and conference was attended by Russian Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Alexey Gruzdev.

Welcoming the participants of the opening ceremony of 5pEXPO 2023 and the first plenary session of the 9th Russian Conference on Exhibition, Fair and Congress Activities, President at the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Sergey Katyrin said, One of the activities of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry system is to promote the goods and services of domestic entrepreneurs to various markets, to provide an opportunity for representatives of companies to get acquainted with the latest technologies, the latest equipment, and to exchange opinions. All this is provided by exhibitions and congresses. At the moment more than one hundred regional chambers are engaged in exhibition activities, and the work in this respect is growing. We have retained a significant part of those who wanted to work with Russia. This is, of course, largely thanks to the organisers of congresses and exhibitions.  

Sergey Katyrin assessed the prospects of the exhibition industry as generally good. He pointed out that many issues of industry development had been resolved in the previous period. For example, the legal concept of congress and exhibition activity was developed for the first time, and the Strategy for the Development of the Congress and Exhibition Industry Until 2030 was adopted at the state level. At the same time, there is still work to be done: the adoption of the law on exhibition activities remains a relevant issue. It is also important that exhibition grounds are created in the regions, as Russia, given its size, clearly lacks exhibition space, and this is one of the priority issues that regional players and regulators will have to be involved in solving in the near future.

Alexey Gruzdev emphasised in his speech that the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade sees the promotion of the exhibition industry as its priority. The industry deserves special attention and has a cumulative effect. Today we have reached a stable growth trajectory. We need to solve a lot of systemic issues to make this growth long-term and even. We have a lot to do: digitalisation of the industry, expansion of exhibition events coverage, and development of b2b dialogue format, which capitalises the costs of event participants. A very important area is the quality of services. We need to further improve the standards of congress and exhibition activities. Professional and educational standards are no less important. They are designed to maintain high requirements for professionals trained by institutes and employed by companies providing services. These should be modern professionals who are constantly working to improve their qualifications, so that our companies meet the level of global trends and can provide competitive services to foreign participants not only in Russia, but also abroad. 

The Russian deputy minister of industry and trade pointed out the need for a more balanced distribution of exhibitions across Russian regions. The two capitals host the vast majority of exhibitions and congresses events, says Alexey Gruzdev. It is important to go to the regions, it is important that the regional infrastructure is created on the basis of a detailed analysis of regional industry specifics. Rating the event potential of the regions will allow us to do this. It will also help us developing regional standards for exhibition activities.

Vice President at the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Maxim Fateev and Chair at the Committee on Exhibition, Fair, and Convention Activity of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Director General at EXPOCENTRE AO Alexey Vyalkin moderated the rest of the discussion.

The head of the relevant committee of the Russian Chamber of Commerce and Industry separately touched upon the topic of financial support for the industry, focusing on the improvement of support mechanisms for exhibitors and participants. Alexey Vyalkin believes that it is necessary to fine-tune the mechanisms of such support so that they do not impose an additional burden on the budget. It is about redistribution of state funds that are currently allocated to stimulate the participation of Russian manufacturing companies in foreign exhibitions. They should be brought to support participation in exhibitions in Russia. Moreover, the list of such exhibitions should be formed taking into account the topics in demand, statistics of implemented projects and exhibition audits. We should also look at the programmes that are currently being implemented through regional development institutions, the My Business centres, chambers of commerce and industry, which participate in the arrangement of groups stands and pavilions of the regions, said Mr. Vyalkin.

Speaking about the development of the exhibition infrastructure, Alexey Vyalkin noted the importance of using the mechanisms of public-private partnership, within which anchor investment projects in the exhibition sector are capable of boosting other areas of the regional economy.

President at the Russian Union of Exhibitions and Fairs and General Director at ExpoForum-International Sergey Voronkov dwelled on the current trends of the modern exhibition and congress industry in his overview for the conference participants. He noted the active recovery going on in the exhibition market and the acquisition of sufficient industry resistance to the challenges faced by companies in recent years. According to Mr. Voronkov, the Russian exhibition industry continues to transform dynamically, absorbing modern technological solutions and new formats of work.

Deputy General Director at World Trade Center Vadim Subbotin spoke about the successful reorientation of WTC's business towards the domestic market and friendly countries.

The participants of the plenary session of the 9th Russian Conference on Exhibition, Fair and Congress Activities also talked about other issues and challenges related to the adaptation of the domestic market of exhibition and congress services to the emerging new realities.

In addition to the plenary session, the forum and conference included several expert sessions: Activation of the System of Standardisation of Exhibition, Fair and Congress Activities; Regional Exhibitions as a Barometer of Development and Export Potential of the Region; Events and Exhibitions. What Factors Shape Market Trends and Tendencies?; and Protection, Evaluation and Introduction of Intellectual Property Objects into Circulation in the Congress and Exhibition Industry.

5pEXPO 2023 and the 9th Russian Conference on Exhibition, Fair and Congress Activities will continue on 25 and 26 October.

Press Service, EXPOCENTRE AO