The Canberra Convention Bureau enthusiastically acknowledges the ACT Government’s commitment to the Australia Forum project despite not securing development funding from the Federal Government. The funds the ACT government has committed in this budget will contribute to the proposal being progressed to investment ready status by 2016.
“It is important to progress the functional brief, reference design, traffic management and governance arrangements for the development particularly now the site (in the South East quadrant of London Circuit facing the City Hill Park) has been selected” said Robyn Hendry CEO of the Canberra Convention Bureau. “Having the project at investment ready status will be the best way to work towards attracting both private sector and Federal Government funding in the future”.
“A new convention centre is more than just a capital works project that will provide jobs during construction”, Ms Hendry went on to say “It is also an ongoing driver of economic benefit to the city over the long term. Conference delegates come from around Australia and the world and inject significant export income directly into the economy on an ongoing basis”.
“And the good news is that, provided we have the required facilities, the conference market that Canberra attracts is not subject to the vagaries of the political and local economic cycles. These events are about professional development which is an ongoing need and often written into the constitution of national and international associations, and the status of Canberra as the National Capital also makes it the natural choice for high level government meetings”.
It is also important to remember that conferencing in Canberra brings more than immediate direct economic benefits” said Ms Hendry. “Conferences allow a city to showcase its capabilities to an external audience, to create networks and to develop business relationships that can have much longer reaching positive economic impacts.”