Durban has won the right to host the next three Sports and Events Tourism Exchange exhibitions, which sees representatives from the sports, tourism and events industries coming together to position South Africa as a major sports and events destination, from 2012 to 2014.
“The city of Durban will be an excellent host for the Sports and Events Tourism Exchange,” said South African Tourism global events manager Sugen Pillay in a statement last week. “Durban recently hosted the International Olympic Committee session and in 2010 it was a host city during the 2010 Fifa World Cup.
“It is strengthening its position as a world class sporting destination with the capability and capacity to bid for mega events in the future.”
The inaugural SETE exhibition, held in Cape Town in July this year, exceeded all expectations, with the exhibition attracting 88 exhibitors and over 1 400 visitors, and the conference attracting 32 speakers, 191 delegates and 25 international hosted buyers.
The international buyers came from as far afield as Australia, Canada, China, France, India, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Russia, Switzerland, UK and USA. Outside of the international hosted buyers and speakers there was country participation form Botswana, DRC, Germany, Namibia, Netherlands and Zimbabwe.
“After a successful inaugural event held in Cape Town in July this year, we look forward to growing the event together with the city of Durban and the province of KwaZulu-Natal over the next three years,” said Thebe Exhibitions and Projects Group MD Carol Weaving.
“We believe that by awarding a three-year contract to the new host city of Durban, this will add an element of continuity to the event, establishing it as a ‘must attend’ on the annual global sports and events calendar.”
The key outcomes of the 2011 event saw the establishment of a steering committee, driven by Sports and Recreation SA, South African Tourism and the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee, which will explore the establishment of an events fund, establish criteria for the management of the fund and pave the way forward for an effective communication plan to all stakeholders.
“The city of Durban and the province of KwaZulu-Natal are delighted to host the likes of the Sports and Events Tourism Exchange as this not only provides the opportunity to showcase what Durban and KwaZulu Natal has to offer as a sporting destination, but to prove that Durban certainly has the potential to host mega-events such as the Olympics,” said Durban KwaZulu-Natal Convention Bureau CEO James Seymour.
The next SETE exhibition and conference will take place from 12-14 September 2012 at the International Convention Centre.