Belfast Telegraph

Capital vies with European rivals to host prestigious £3m conference

By Clare Weir

Belfast is in the running to welcome up to 2000 business leaders as it bids to hold a major European conference which could bring £3m to the Northern Ireland economy.

Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce in partnership with Belfast Visitor and Convention Bureau is competing to host the biennial World Chamber Congress in 2015 against cities including Geneva, Liverpool, Manchester and Turin.

A key presentation will be delivered to the General Council of the World Chamber Federation (WCF) in Istanbul in September.

The chamber passed the first stage of the bid process with a promotional video which had the support of the enterprise minister Arlene Foster, and former Lord Mayor of Belfast, Niall Ó Donnghaile.

Northern Ireland Chamber Chief Executive, Ann McGregor, said that hosting the event could further propel Northern Ireland on to the world stage.

"The four-day event has the potential not only to contribute up to £3m to the economy but to also spread the word that Northern Ireland is well and truly open for international business," she said.

"This conference will bring together chamber presidents from all over the world and help Northern Ireland establish additional international connections that can only be good for export.

"Although Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce faces tough competition in our bid, the initial stages will increase Northern Ireland's profile."

For further details on how to support the bid, visit www.northernirelandchamber.com.

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