TFWA Asia Pacific 2023 buyers up 1% on 2019

By Luke Barras-hill |

Erik Juul-Mortensen, President, TFWA. Source: TFWA.

This year’s Tax Free World Association (TFWA) Asia Pacific Exhibition & Conference in Singapore (7-11 May) drew 2,934 visitors – 10% down on the level recorded in 2019.

Of that figure, 1,228 were representatives from DF&TR operators and landlords – up 1% on 2019.

A total of 200 exhibitors – 61 new to the event – showcased their products and services across 8,469sq m of convention space, the association confirmed in figures* shared at it’s closing press conference this week.

The TFWA Conference on Monday 8 May attracted an impressive 1,572 delegates – a record in Singapore.

The Welcome Cocktail drew 1,016 attendees versus 927 in 2019 – another record for the event – and the TFWA Asia Pacific Lounge gathered more than 500 guests each evening.

Dates announced for TFWA AP 24

This year’s much anticipated return – the first full-scale event since 2019 – debuted TFWA i.lab Asia, which hosted 15 participating companies.

The TFWA One2One meeting service held 678 pre-arranged meetings.

“Personally, I find that 10% down on 2019 is a very satisfactory [visitor] figure given the circumstances and I’m willing to predict going forward that if things continue the way they are now, we’ll be way above the 2019 figure at the end of next year,” said Erik Juul-Mortensen, President, TFWA.

Members of the press put their questions to the TFWA Board’s Hervé Ducros (far left) Sam Gerber (second left), Frédéric Garcia-Pelayo (third left) and President Erik Juul-Mortensen (fourth left); joined by TFWA Managing Director John Rimmer at the traditional closing press conference.

“If you look at the quality of the buying companies, it was really high quality – all the companies that matter in the region were here, so from an organisation standpoint we are very happy and satisfied with what we’ve seen so far.”

During the press conference, the association confirmed that next year’s TFWA Asia Pacific Exhibition & Conference will return to the Marina Bay Sands Expo & Convention Centre on 12-16 May.

DF&TR stakeholders now turn their attentions to the ASUTIL Conference in Buenos Aires (7-8 June); TFWA World Exhibition & Conference (1-5 October) in Cannes; and the MEADFA Conference, taking place this year in Accra, Ghana.

Standing room only: More than 1,500 delegates attended the TFWA Asia Pacific Conference on Monday 8 May. Source: TFWA.

“The board of MEADFA has felt for a long time that we must move into Africa; this is the first step and it will be exciting to see this in November,” added Juul-Mortensen.

Sam Gerber, Managing Partner at WorldConnect and Vice President Corporate at TFWA said pre-bookings for the TFWA World Exhibition in Cannes is ‘overwhelming’.

“Requests are shooting up very quickly; the good news is we are back,” he added,

*Figures correct as of EOB Wednesday 10 May. Final numbers to update in due course. More to follow…

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