Durban's ICC contributes R11.6bn to GDP

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Durban - The International Convention Centre (ICC) in Durban has contributed R11.4 billion to the GDP over the last five financial years, says ICC Chief Executive, Julie-May Ellingson.

The venue, which will host the all important United Nations' conference on climate change later this month, has also become a vital catalyst for economic growth in KwaZulu-Natal and put the city on the global conferencing map.

"This shows a significant growth and reflects the success of the ICC as a municipal entity which is run as a commercial enterprise that contributes to the city's development goals," said Ellingson.

The ICC was originally developed as a catalyst for economic development for the city at a cost of R800 million and is now said to have more than delivered its return on investment for the province.

"The ICC produced revenues of R55.4 million for the 3-month period July to September 2011 performing 46% better than budget, which is an outstanding achievement by the team. This compares with R39.3 million for the same period in 2010.

"This comes on top of achieving record revenues of R129.4 million which was ahead of budget for the 2010/11 financial year," said Ellingson.

During this period the ICC hosted a total of 105 events, seven of which were high profile international conferences and 98 national events including corporate and private events.

In the process, the ICC has created 3 376 direct and 4 462 indirect jobs during the 2010/2011 financial year generating 1 432 866 delegate and visitor days in Durban.

Despite the international economic slowdown, the ICC together with the Durban KwaZulu-Natal Convention Bureau, has managed to confirm five international conferences from 2012 to 2019.

These conferences include the Rotary International Congress which will attract in excess of 15 000 delegates in 2019 and the International Congress of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine in 2017.

"We will continue to focus on growing our core business and retaining our status as Africa's Leading Meetings and Conference Centre. The ICC team has successfully hosted some of the largest conferences in the world and we look forward to continuing to do so," added Ellingson.