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CONFERENCES: CTICC flies high as bids roll in


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FOUR new international congresses have been won by Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) which will bring nearly 5 000 delegates and as much as R600 million in spending power to benefit Cape Town’s coffers over the next few years.

Hosting the International Astronautical Congress in October 2011  will see 2 000 delegates and scientists from space agencies and institutes across the world fly in to the city.

CTICC has also been selected for the December 2014 congress of the UNI-Global Union Congress drawing a further 2 000 international trade unionists to the Mother City. More than 900 unions representing 15 million members will attend.

The International Aquarium Congress to be hosted at CTICC in September 2012 will see some 500 delegates from overseas in Cape Town. Some 350 nuclear professionals arrive from 60 different countries for the Youth Nuclear Congress 2010 being held at CTICC  in July 2010.

Dirk Elzinga, managing director of CTICC, says international events like these are an accolade to the world-class facilities provided by the convention centre which are on par, or better, than many in other popular destinations around the globe.

“Word quickly gets around in this industry if a venue is not up to scratch in any way, and we have to diligently prove and improve our service constantly. It does not matter how beautiful Cape Town may be as a destination if the delegates have a bad experience when under our roof. We expect our figures to increase noticeably from 2009, given the rise in the number of large events we will be hosting.” He says that by 2013 the number of international tourists in South Africa, generated by delegates who have attended events at CTICC, may be more than one million. On average R2 400 is spent per delegate, per day, on registration, accommodation, local travel and transportation, gastronomy and souvenirs when in Cape Town. The total spend of 5 000 delegates attending an average 5-day congress is estimated at R600 million.

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