Brisbane’s meeting and events agenda is filling up fast as the city’s reputation as a conference hub grows in the lead-up to the G20 Leaders Summit this November.

The Brisbane Convention Bureau has secured 18 conference bids since January alone, generating almost $8 million in economic value for the city via an expected 5000 delegates and 14,000 room nights for the city’s hoteliers.

Several conferences held in Brisbane in the past six months have attracted 1000 or more delegates, including:

  • The Asia Pacific Association for the Study of Liver 2014 – 3000 delegates
  • World Congress of Audiology 2014 – 1700 delegates
  • EduTECH National Congress & Exhibition 2014  – 5270 delegates
  • 2014 Congress of the Asia Pacific Initiative on Reproduction  – 1318 delegates

The Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) chose to bring its annual national conference to Brisbane from June 11-12 to coincide with the city hosting the G20.

ACOSS CEO Cassandra Goldie said the national peak body for Australia’s community and social services sector liked the idea of holding its annual conference in Brisbane in the same year the city is set to host the G20.

More than 400 delegates from across Australia attended the ACOSS National Conference at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre.

This influx of delegates translates into a $437,600 economic benefit for the city thanks to the estimated average amount of money each delegate would spend in the city.

“The conference provided a unique opportunity to engage with the work of the Civil Society 20 (C20) as it engages with the G20 and to gain insight into the emerging global inclusive growth agenda, and the policy and advocacy opportunities this may present,” Ms Goldie said.

“We were delighted to come to Brisbane to work with local agencies, leaders and the community.”

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said delegates and visitors coming to Brisbane for the G20 would find out first-hand why the city was fast building its reputation as an Asia-Pacific conventions hotspot.

“Visitors to Brisbane are often astounded by the sophistication of the city, with future-proofed infrastructure, a zest for innovation, enviable lifestyle and climate and exceptional conference facilities, hotels and leisure attractions,” Cr Quirk said.

“We expect the 4000 delegates and 3000 media visitors attending the G20 Leaders Summit in Brisbane this November will return to their home countries and spread the word about Australia’s new world city of Brisbane and its offerings.

“This will, in turn, help to attract talent, investment and other significant conferences to the city in the key industry sectors of energy and resources, innovative manufacturing, logistics and distribution and health and life sciences.”

John Aitken, CEO of Brisbane’s economic development board Brisbane Marketing, said the initiatives put in place to meet the needs of G20 delegates and visitors would be invaluable for future event organisers and visitors who choose Brisbane to host their conferences.

Brisbane City Council and Brisbane Marketing will lead a city-wide campaign that includes the development of a welcoming strategy aimed to engage the business events industry at all visitation touch points.

“Our Brisbane Welcomes the World strategy will also ensure our city’s service and transport industry staff and volunteers have the tools and information to make visitors feel welcome and informed for the G20 visit and thereafter as an important G20-driven legacy,” Mr Aitken said.