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Value of the Exhibition Industry
—— An engine of modern service and municipal development

There are various decription about the value of exhibition industry. One common recognition is that exhibition industry is an important part of modern service industry which can bring information, visitors and material flow. The author, based on his exhibition planning and organizing experience over 10 years, regards the exhibition industry as a more influential factor to a city or a region. It can be an engine for the municipal development and plays an important role in the city’s economic structure and position. It also is an engine for the service industry to broadcast the reputation of the city.
The following points are listed to support this idea. (exhibition industry mentioned in this paper mainly refers to great-sized conferences and expositions that attracts visitors from other regions or countries).

1. Exhibition industry, the source and engine of the service industry
People flow are the main key in the service industry. If there is small or few people flow or people with little consumption in a city, there would be no space for the service industry. Exhibitions can invite many people with great consumption ability to come from other places. Compared with those short-stay passengers with small consumption ability who has little contribution to the city’s economy, visitors for exhibitions, mainly senior businessmen, have stronger consuming functions. Exhibitions also bring more people flow for the modern service industry like airlines, railways, hotels, restaurants, logistics and tourism. Suppose 10,000 passengers increased because of exhibitions everyday in a city, the service industry in that city can be greatly incented with one million more jobs created. Exhibitions like Canton Fair and High-tech Fair bring ever greater incentives to a city. Exhibition companies set branches and offices in other cities, open new markets and attract new technology, ideas and elites. All the above shows that the exhibition industry is he source and engine of the service industry. The municipal leaders should spare no efforts to the exhibition industry development so as to enhance the city’s service industry.

2. Exhibition industry influences the economic positioning and structure of the city or the region
Guangzhou started its foreign trade ever since the opening of Shisanhang to do business with foreign businessmen. In 1957, the State Counsil decided to hold Canton Fair as a window for the foreign trade. Up to now, thousands of businessmen from all over the world make long stays in Guangzhou to import Chinese commodities to their countries. Guangzhou has become a foreign trade center for domestic commodities. Many goods from other places of China are gathered in Guangzhou and then sold to foreign countries. Foreign trade income occupies a big ratio in Guangzhou’s economy. The 104th Canton Fairs has made great contributions to this achievements. Since 1999, Shenzhen has been holding China (International) High-tech Fair which plays an important role in the formation of Shenzhen’s high-tech industry base. In addition, all kinds of manufacturing exhibitions in Dongguan promote the city’s reputation as a manufacturing city. And the small commodities fair in Yiwu, Zhejiang province also quickly makes Yiwu welknown as a small commodities trade city. All these examples show the great influence exhibitions exert to a city mode and development.

3. Exhibition Industry is a strong and unique advertisement for a city
Cities all over the world are finding ways to make their advertisment to let more people know and remember them. One of the best way to achieve this is to invite people from all over the world to visit them, another is to let the cities frequently mentioned by people. Exhibition industry can realize these two ways. Visitors for exhibitions can make people shortly stay in the city and people can get to know and remember the host city from exhibitions. 

Take Shanghai and Shenzhen as an example. Shanghai develops quickly after the reform and opening-up. Many foreign companies set branches in Shanghai. The author holds the view that Shanghai’s quick development attributes to Shanghai’s familiality to foreigners as the biggest city in Asian in the 1920s to 1940s. The foreigners are will to invest in a familiar city. On the contrary, Shenzhen is a new city name to foreigners, thus its recognition is smaller than Shanghai in the world.

Another example is Dongguan Houjie. Houjie is only a small village in Dongguan, one of the thousands in China. However, it is well-known to the world because of exhibitions held there. Since 2002,. The leaders of Houjie have constructed the Guangdong Modern Exhibition Centre and a series of brand exhibitions. At present, over 30 exhibitions are held in Houjie annually, which made Houjie world famous, more famous than some capital cities and Humen and Chang’an, other key villages in Dongguan. In 2007, the International Printing Exhibition was held in Houjie, which attracted many elites in printing industry. Without this exhibition, these elites would have never been to Houjie for their lifetime. They came to know Houjie and Dongguan. This is the real charm of exhibition industry: broadcasting culture, strengthening communication and benefiting cities.

Great exhibitions make similar contributions to cities like Olympic Games and attract worldwide attention and promote cities’ development. Besides, exhibition is a very profitable industry.

All the above the author’s deep understanding of the value of exhibition industry.
Author, Zhangzhi, President of Wise Exhibition (Guangdong) Co., Ltd. This paper is published and the copyright is reserved.

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