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16th European Congress on Biotechnology visits Scotland for the first time

A high-profile international conference to discuss the latest developments in biotechnology is set to generate millions of pounds for the local economy when it commenced in Edinburgh on Sunday.  
With Marketing Edinburgh estimating an economic value of £1.3 million to Edinburgh, the four day European Congress on Biotechnology (ECB16) is taking place at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC) from 13-16 July 2014 and is expected to attract over 800 academic and industrial biotechnologists. The scientific programme is designed to cover all aspects of biotechnology, including environmental and green biotechnology, microbial physiology, microbial synthetic and systems biology, industrial biotechnology, biochemical engineering, medical biotechnology and much more.

ECB16 has benefited from VisitScotland's Conference Bid Fund. Match-funded by cities, the bid fund is geared towards increasing Scotland's competitiveness within the conventions market and attract high-yielding conferences, linked to Scotland's areas of expertise in industry, commerce, science and medicine.  

Marketing Edinburgh Chief Executive John Donnelly, said: "Bringing ECB16 to Scotland was the result of a terrific collaboration between Convention Edinburgh, the EICC and our members. The entire process commenced over two years ago, when we approached Edinburgh Napier University's Emeritus Professor and Edinburgh Ambassador, Charlie Bryce, to potentially lead the conference bid.  

"From there it was a lot of hard work from our Ambassadors, the Business Tourism team, host venue the EICC, VisitScotland and conference agency TFI Group - not only to initially win the bid but to bring those plans to fruition. It's a great example of how working together effectively can achieve amazing results and successfully generate millions for Edinburgh's economy".   

Fergus Ewing, Scotland's Tourism Minister, said: "The VisitScotland Conference Bid Fund has been instrumental in helping to attract numerous prestigious, high-yield, high-spend international conferences to this country, making Scotland more competitive within the international conference market. Securing the bid for the European Congress on Biotechnology is excellent news for Scotland, and for Edinburgh in particular, and is further testament to the world-class facilities at the EICC."  

Louise Andrew, EICC Head of Sales and Marketing said:  "Congresses in city centre locations are always successful and the ultimate flexibility of our space, in the heart of Edinburgh, is even more value enhancing. During ECB16 each day begins and ends with major plenary sessions for 800 plus delegates but in less time than it takes to break for coffee our revolving auditoria deliver four symposia stages in the same space, optimising congress programme time and delegate satisfaction".  

Simon Maier, Creative Director, TFI Group, said:  "ECB16 is organised by the EFB in conjunction with us; working together in close partnership, we have used our shared expertise to produce a brilliant, vibrant and engaging congress which is certain to leave its mark in Edinburgh's scientific history. TFI looks forward to organising more events in this beautiful city, where we already have a strong presence."  

Over 109 conferences and events are due to take place in Edinburgh between 2014 and 2021, estimated to generate over £117 million for the local economy. This includes internationally respected conventions such as the European Aquaculture Society in 2016 and the Cleft Lip/Palate and Related Craniofacial Anomalies conference in 2021.  

Edinburgh is the number one ICCA (International Congress and Convention Association) conference destination in the UK outside of London and rated 21 in the top 50 European City ranking.

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