Belfast Telegraph

New Business Ambassador Programme launched to attract conferences to Northern Ireland

Visit Belfast, Invest Northern Ireland and Northern Ireland Tourist Board have joined forces to encourage local business leaders to attract major national and international meetings and conferences to Northern Ireland.

The Business Ambassador Programme is a new initiative, led by Visit Belfast, which aims to expand the region’s tourism economy by attracting international conferences, meetings and events to Northern Ireland.

As part of this new, concerted effort, Enterprise, Trade and Investment Minister, Arlene Foster, said she is confident it will cement Northern Ireland’s success and power a new era of business and tourism growth and is calling on Northern Ireland’s business leaders to get directly involved.

“Encouraging more companies to visit Belfast and Northern Ireland is an important step in increasing business and investment opportunities for the region and I’m confident that through the support of our local, successful and forward-thinking business community and the personal commitment of their owners, managers and staff, we can attract even more global business organisations to Northern Ireland for their next conference, meeting or event.”

“The new Business Ambassador Programme aims to harness the support of the local business community and diaspora network to attract even more national and international business events to the region, boosting visitor numbers and spend in the local economy,” Minister Foster said.

Competition in the global conferencing and events sector is extremely intense. However, Belfast and Northern Ireland has been performing exceptionally well.

Visit Belfast recently announced that £80 million of conference business has been secured for the local economy by the organisation in the last three years.

Visit Belfast Chief Executive Gerry Lennon said: “The economic benefits of hosting conferences and business events in the city extend right across the hospitality, retail and tourism sectors. They deliver a welcome boost to the weekday economy here and are an integral part of our growing tourism industry in Belfast – the gateway to the whole of Northern Ireland.”

“Belfast is now officially the number one conference and incentive city destination in the UK according to the industry-led C&IT magazine. With this new initiative, we want Belfast to be the leading conference destination in Europe and across the globe.”

Business conferences and events provide an opportunity to invite customers, investors, partners and suppliers to Northern Ireland, giving us a fantastic opportunity to showcase first-hand what we have to offer as a place to do business,” Invest Northern Ireland Chief Executive Alastair Hamilton said.

Minister Foster said the infrastructure investment and marketing which have already helped to position Northern Ireland as a world class destination for conferences, meetings and business events.

If you are interested in joining the Business Ambassador Programme, and how you and your company can get involved with the support available, please contact Sarah Gribben at Visit Belfast on 028 9023 9026 or email

Belfast Telegraph Digital