Tourism Minister visits Birmingham ahead of national tourism strategy

Senior figures from Birmingham’s business
tourism community impressed on Tourism Minister John Penrose the importance of
aligning tourism strategies with inward investment plans during his visit to the city 10 February.

Penrose was attending a roundtable discussing
with representatives of Marketing Birmingham, which operates the city’s business
and leisure tourism campaigns, Meet Birmingham and Visit

Birmingham is a key driver of the UK’s events industry contributing
more than £6bn per annum and generating 100,000 jobs (source: KPMG).

Penrose was in Birmingham on a fact-finding tour ahead of the Government’s launch of a national tourism strategy later
this month.

Chief Executive of Marketing Birmingham, Neil Rami, said: “In the week that both Visit
Britain and Visit England announced cuts to their staffing levels and overseas
presence, the importance of the contribution Birmingham can make to the national visitor
economy has been brought into sharp focus.

“Working with partners across the public and
private sectors has allowed us to develop a strategy that works for the city and
we are keen to work with the Minister to build on this success,” he added.

Rami said placing the promotion of the city
as a tourism and investor destination within one organisation had allowed
Marketing Birmingham to align its strategy and resources to effectively sell the
city at home and abroad. “Bringing
together one of the city’s investment
priorities, low carbon, with our conferencing offer has already secured a global
solar power conference for the city.” 

It was an example, Rami said, of how to
leverage the business tourism sector to benefit the wider

Penrose said: “Birmingham’s location, leading event venues such as the
NEC, and track record for delivering large, high profile events have ensured
that it has established a reputation as one of Europe’s premier meeting places.”

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Paul Colston


Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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