Edinburgh set for £51.5m cash injection

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Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC) expects to draw an estimated £51.5m economic influx to the city in 2016, compared with £45.8m in 2015 thanks to a large increase in delegate numbers visiting the city.

Total visitor numbers are expected to reach 90,000 (27%) before the end of the year, compared to 71,000 the previous year.

EICC hosted some of the biggest names on the UK comedy circuit at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe, including Daniel Sloss and Jimeoin.

Read more: EICC first Scottish business on new ISO quality and environmental standard.

More than 180 events are expected for the remainder of 2016, compared with 134 in 2015.

Growth is attributed to winning conference bookings from organisations around the world.

Marshall Dallas, chief executive at EICC, said the general consensus suggested the centre is “rapidly moving up the order when it comes to the most highly-rated conference venues across the world”.

When asked by Herald Scotland if bookings had slowed since the Brexit vote, a spokesman for EICC said: “Bookings for future years are at a good level, the EICC is accustomed to dealing with business challenges and is confident of adapting to any changes that the future brings.

“At present we are cautiously confident, however business tourism must remain an agenda priority for government due to the far reaching impact this has in terms of both economic and sector benefit.”

Business tourism has become an increasingly important economic factor for Scotland and its cities.

Earlier in the year, Convention Edinburgh said that bookings up to March were likely to bring in £94.3m, a suggested £2.8m higher than the valuation of the business secured the preceding year.

Over 74,000 delegates are expected to attend events won in the latest year, with figures including hotel bookings and university bookings as well as EICC.

Edinburgh ranked 35th in the world in ICCA top 100 with 67 events in 2015.

Martin Fullard

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Martin Fullard

Martin Fullard is the Deputy Editor at Conference News. Formerly a web editor at a national newspaper in the Middle East and motoring journalist.

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