With Meetings Africa, the annual trade show which showcases Africa’s diverse offerings of services and products, fast approaching KwaZulu-Natal (represented by the Durban KwaZulu-Natal Convention Bureau) is preparing to use this as an opportunity to continue its work in positioning the region as a top business tourism destination.
Business tourism is a global multi-billion-rand dollar industry, sustaining more than 60-million jobs. In South Africa, it contributes more than R115-billion to the country’s GDP in South Africa, creating almost 252 000 direct and indirect jobs. And it is worth R3-billion a year in KZN, sustaining almost 24 000 jobs.
Meetings Africa, which this year is being held in Sandton, Gauteng, runs from February 25-27, with a BONDay of educational programmes and networking launching the show on the 25th and the exhibition proceeding on the 26th and 27th.
International buyers from some 35 countries, covering all the major global regions, will be attending the high-profile show and the Durban KZN CB will get the chance to have face-to-face meetings with 400 highly-qualified hosted buyers.
It is hoped that the robust discussions that will take place will lead to more international meetings and major conferences being held in KZN. The Durban KZN CB team will also be able to network with industry colleagues across multiple sectors and industries.
“We are hoping to convince these incentive business buyers and top decision makers to bring their next international conferences and meetings to KZN,” explained Phindile Makwakwa, the Acting Chief Executive Officer of Tourism KZN. Our previous engagements at such important platforms have proved successful, resulting in KZN hosting such major global conferences as the World Aids Conference which we have hosted twice."
The Durban KZN CB delegation will also be taking along two local SMMEs who are Progressor SA and Maphise Holdings. The SMMEs are being supported by the Durban KZN CB to give them the unique opportunity to gain insights into the business tourism sector and to be exposed to a wide range of key stakeholders, while promoting their businesses.
Trade partners sharing the KZN exhibition stand will be: Ushaka Marine World, the Greyville Convention Centre, the Msinsi Resorts and Game Reserves, the Olive Convention Centre, Okhahlamba-Drakensberg Tourism, Maphise Holdings, Progressor SA, the Moses Mabhida Stadium and Aqua Group Tours.
Durban and KZN will be hosting the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) Meetings Programme at the Durban International Convention Centre from June 18-20