A €4m subvention fund was hailed a ‘huge success’ after hundreds of event organisers took advantage of the scheme in the five months since its launch.
So far 242 conferences have received preliminary funding, totalling €2.5m, through the Vienna Meeting Fund, which is being administered by the Vienna Convention Bureau.
This equates to more than 60% of the €4 million funding pot already being utilised. And according to projections, these events will add €371m to city coffers by the end of 2023. Two-thirds (67%) of the applications come from the congress sector the balance from corporate events.
Christian Woronka, head of the VCB, said the funding measures had had a strong leverage effect both for tourism and for other industries in the sector's orbit, such as supplier companies.
He said: "Summing up all events, according to the current planning status, we will physically bring around 146,000 participants to Vienna on site, with more than 40 per cent of the applications so far for 2022 and 2023. 51 percent of the events will take place with participants exclusively on site, the rest are hybrid events, i.e., a mix of face-to-face and digital participation.”
Most submissions came from the fields of human medicine, business, banking and finance.
The "7th Congress of the European Academy of Neurology" (EAN) has already taken place at the Austria Center Vienna with more than 11,000 mainly virtually connected participants. Large medical congresses such as the "Eurospine 2021" in October are planned with up to 2,000 participants on site and 400 virtually connected persons in the Messe Wien Exhibition & Congress Center.
Subsidies are imbursed after the event. The maximum amount per event is €60,000, provided certain criteria is met (such as the number of overnight stays by participants in Viennese hotels).
AMI editor James
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