1. Meetings tourism and the sports industry join forces with the support of the Government of Catalonia
  2. The aim of the initiative is to position Catalonia internationally as a destination for the organisation and attraction of professional events related to sports.

Catalunya Meetings & Sports has been created to promote the country in the field of organising and attracting international meetings, conventions, congresses and exhibitions linked to the sports industry.

The Government Secretary for Business and Competitiveness highlighted “the cross-cutting nature of the project due to its symbiosis between meetings tourism and sport, and the necessary public-private collaboration”. Through this strategic relationship, the Government hopes to “strengthen two key economic sectors of Catalonia, in order to generate business, increase investments, improve international positioning, and drive their transformation,” he concluded.

Meanwhile, the Secretary General for Sport and Physical Activity emphasised the role of sport as a “generator of economic activity and progress” and added that “Catalonia is a sporting country in large part thanks to a network of entities with expertise and experience in successfully organising major international sports events”. Events that “leave behind a legacy, that are not just a few days of competition. Rather, we boost interest in sport creating parallel activities to grow grassroots sports in Catalonia.”

Catalonia, a world leader in professional sporting events

Catalonia is the region with the highest concentration of sports companies in Europe, with nearly 1,400, generating more than 6.5 billion euros in revenue and employing nearly 32,000 people. Sport is an emerging sector in the Catalan productive ecosystem and generates 2% of Catalonia’s GDP. Moreover, the city of Barcelona is the fifth city in Europe in terms of the number of start-ups in the sports sector.

This strength in such a specific sector is a key factor for the generation and attraction of events and meetings. Currently, the city of Barcelona ranks seventh worldwide in terms of its focus on sports, according to the Ranking of Sports Cities 2023, and it ranks first in terms of the number of international congress attendees, according to the ICCA ranking.

Catalonia’s organisational capacity, entrepreneurial spirit, research, excellent quality of facilities, and its solid sporting foundations are decisive factors that explain its strong positioning in attracting professional events from the world of sports.

Proof of the region’s excellence in this specialised area of tourism is the organisation of the first World Sports Tourism Congress, held in Lloret de Mar in 2021. This year, the highlight is the celebration of the Barcelona 2024 America’s Cup sailing competition, which, despite not being solely focused on a professional audience, serves as a catalyst for business events linked to the blue economy.



El secretari d'Empresa i Competitivitat, Albert Castellanos Maduell.

El secretari d'Empresa i Competitivitat, Albert Castellanos Maduell. 1847932

La secretària general de l'Esport i de l'Activitat Física, Anna Caula i Paretas.

La secretària general de l'Esport i de l'Activitat Física, Anna Caula i Paretas. 2040179