The emerging meeting, incentive, convention and exhibition (MICE) segment has showed the potentials that tourist industry can tap. MICE has become an integral part of urban tourism in that it is lucrative in hard-currency earning and conductive to the development of relevant industries. The development of MICE has become one of the key indicators for measuring a city's international level.

As an international metropolis, Beijing has attracted attention worldwide. Beijing has a population of 12.5 million and covers 16,800 square kilometers of land. With a history lasting more than 3,000 years, Beijing was once imperial capital of five dynasties. From the Forbidden City to an unknown lane, Beijingers can tell tales that enthralls all listeners.

As the capital of the People's Republic of China, Beijing is also a dynamic and magnificent city with all socio-economic index among top categories in China. Thanks to its ancient charm and modern infrastructure, 196 out of world's top 500 multinational corporations have set up their operations in Beijing either for investment or for showcasing their own achievements to the rest part of China.

For MICE segment, all data in the year 2000 can prove that it has become an independent economic niche to boost the city's economic growth.

The implementation of China's Tenth Five-Year Plan (2001-2005) ushered China's economic construction into a new phase. The advance of high-technologies, the development of information industry and the expansion of domestic and foreign trade combined put new requirement for the development of MICE. China's admission into the World Trade Organization and Beijing's successful Olympic Games bidding also injected impetus to MICE segment in the city. The development of MICE will not only accelerate the construction of urban facilities, telecommunication, transport network and sport venues, but also

consolidate Beijing's leading position in China's tourist industry. Moreover, as China speeds up its pace in the opening-up drive and lift more service and trade barriers to overseas investors, MICE economy will score steady growth and go in track with international practice.

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