Mike Kelly s' />

Christchurch has come from nowhere to join the elite on the world conference stakes, says the manager of the city's Convention Centre.

Mike Kelly said the latest international research data showed that Christchurch ranked 23rd worldwide, ahead of Auckland and Wellington.

The most popular cities for meetings were Seoul, Sydney, Singapore, Melbourne, Taipei, Kuala Lumpur, Beijing and Tokyo.

The centre, opened in 1997, cost $15 million and earns the city an estimated $70 million a year in direct economic benefits.