Brisbane has won the right to host 2,500 of the world’s leading gastroenterology experts at Gastro 2015: AGW/WGO International Congress – a first time event for Australia.
The combined meeting of the World Gastroenterology Organisation (WGO) and Australian Gastroenterology Week will take place at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre (BCEC) in September 2015.
Brisbane’s key convention partners led by the BCEC joined with the Gastroenterological Society of Australia (GESA) in bidding for the event.
The Queensland Government through Tourism and Events Queensland, BCEC and Brisbane Marketing all played significant roles in securing the six day event which is expected to generate $9 million for the Queensland economy.
An anticipated high level worldwide attendance of delegates led by Europe and Asia give this event a truly global perspective and provide a unique opportunity to promote the advancement of research and clinical science in Gastroenterology and Hepatology currently being undertaken in Queensland and Australia.
Chief Executive Officer of the Gastroenterological Society of Australia (GESA), Elaine Siggins said there was particular enthusiasm for staging a joint meeting in Australia as Professor James Toouli from Adelaide is on the eve of taking up presidency of the World Gastroenterology Organisation (WGO) – the first Australian presidency in the history of the organisation.
Elaine also cited Brisbane’s appeal for delegates and the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre as being major considerations in the selection process.
“BCEC is a favourite venue and well known to us and I knew I could rely on their support and professionalism and that of their convention partners to promote the meeting and Australia to delegates. Brisbane’s proximity and access to Asia, its great weather and iconic natural attractions were also extremely important,” she said.
BCEC General Manager, Bob O’Keeffe said competition for significant international scientific meetings such as the Gastroenterology event is intense and the benefits to Brisbane are exceptional. “They substantiate the Centre’s reputation for hosting world class events and promote Brisbane’s leading science and research strengths and practices.”
Minister for Tourism, Major Events, Small Business and the Commonwealth Games Jann Stuckey said the Newman Government understood the important role conferences like the Gastro 2015: AGW/WGO International Congress played in boosting tourism and showcasing Queensland to delegates.
“The business events market is worth more than $719 million to the State economy with a total of 4971 business events taking place in Queensland in 2011-12,” Ms Stuckey said.
“With event delegates often exploring the host destination’s tourism attractions, securing business events like this are an important part of the Newman Government’s strategy to grow annual overnight tourism expenditure to $30 billion by 2020.”
Brisbane Marketing Convention Bureau Director Annabel Sullivan said conventions such as Gastro 2015 helped to inject $250 million a year into Brisbane’s economy.
“Conventions are also an important way to expose business leaders and other visiting professionals to the opportunities available to them in Brisbane – Australia’s New World City,” she said.
“Events like Gastro 2015 align with our city’s strategic vision and key business sectors.”