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Scotland shows business class

£1.9 billion business tourism industry to gather in Edinburgh

Although no longer a nation of hunters, gatherers are playing a vital role in the economy, with the meetings, incentives, conference and events (MICE) industry currently booming in Scotland and with the potential to grow significantly over the next decade.

Business tourism, which includes high-yield meetings and conferences, is worth nearly 
£2 billion to the economy and, on Tuesday 2 December, hundreds of members of the industry will gather in Edinburgh to learn how to capitalise on the opportunities presented by the country’s heightened profile during 2014.

Organised by VisitScotland and Scottish Enterprise and supported by Dundee and Angus Convention Bureau, Marketing Edinburgh, Glasgow City Marketing Bureau (People Make Glasgow) and Visit Aberdeen, the 2014 Business Tourism Scotland conference will take place in the Assembly Rooms next month. Among the high-profile speakers are the author, television personality and futurist Ben Hammersley and David Campbell, founding director and Chairman of Banks Sadler.

The conference will also see the leaders of Scotland’s three busiest airports take part in a panel discussion entitled “Going that extra mile – making the most of the opportunities”.

Between January and June, there were 238,000 international business trips made to Scotland – a 41 per cent increase on the previous year.

Gordon Dewar, Chief Executive of Edinburgh Airport, Amanda McMillan, Managing Director of Glasgow Airport, and Aberdeen Airport Managing Director Carol Benzie will take part in the conference, which will be addressed by Fergus Ewing, Scotland’s Tourism Minister and Mike Cantlay, Chairman of VisitScotland.

Scotland has been thrust into the international limelight in 2014, having hosted the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, The Ryder Cup at Gleneagles and nearly 1,000 events up and down the country as part of Homecoming. The country also garnered enormous worldwide media coverage as a result of the Independence Referendum.

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