No surprises at the top of the International Congress & Convention Association city and country rankings for association meetings held in 2012. The U.S. retains its top spot as the most popular country and Vienna its place as the most popular city for association congresses of at least 50 people that meet regularly and rotate among at least three countries.

Still, there is big news to share: ICCA counted 1,000 more meetings this year than last year, bringing the total association events counted to 11,150 and providing evidence that the association meetings sector is growing strongly, says Martin Sirk, CEO of ICCA, based in Amsterdam.

The biggest mover on the list is Copenhagen, up from 14th place in last year’s ranking to number eight this year.

Madrid and London, the steadiest movers over the past few years, continue their upward trend. Madrid moved from 13th place in 2010 to sixth in 2011 and 2012, and now edges up to fourth place in the 2013 rankings. London ranked 14th in 2011, seventh in last year’s ranking, and has moved up again this year, to number six (tied with Singapore).

Beijing, which just made it into the top 10 last year falls in this year’s rankings to 13th place. Likewise in the country ratings, China dropped from eighth place to 10th place.

There was not much movement at the top of the country rankings; however, Japan, after the effects of the tsunami and earthquake, is regaining its traditional strength as a meetings destination, rising to eighth place from 13th last year.

Here are this year’s top 20 country and city rankings:


Top Countries for International Association Meetings

1. U.S.A.
2. Germany
3. Spain
4. U.K.
5. France
6. Italy
7. Brazil
8. Japan
9. Netherlands
10. China
11. Austria
12. Canada
13. Australia
14. Switzerland
15. Sweden
16. Republic of Korea
17. Portugal
18. Argentina
19. Belgium
20. Denmark


Top Cities for International Association Meetings

1. Vienna
2. Paris
3. Berlin
4. Madrid
5. Barcelona
6. (tie) London
6. (tie) Singapore
8. Copenhagen
10. Istanbul
11. Prague
12. Stockholm
13. Beijing
14. Brussels
15. Lisbon
16. Bangkok
17. (tie) Helsinki
17. (tie) Seoul
19. Buenos Aires
20. (tie) Budapest
20.  (tie) Rome


Find more details at the ICCA Web site.