13 June 2012

Cape Town to host International Airline Conference

Cape Town will host the 69th IATA Annual General Meeting and World Air Transport Summit (WATS) in 2013.

Cape Town International Convention Centre

The hosting of this conference is an excellent opportunity for Cape Town to showcase how multifaceted it is, while also contributing to its reputation as a 365-day business destination. - Cape Town Tourism CEO, Mariette du Toit-Helmbold

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has chosen the city of Cape Town to host the 69th IATA Annual General Meeting (AGM) and World Air Transport Summit (WATS) from 2-4 June 2013.

Tony Tyler, director general and CEO of IATA, said: 'South Africa will be a great location for the 2013 AGM and WATS. Air connectivity is key to South Africa’s economic success, contributing 2.1% to the country’s GDP.'

Tyler pointed out that air connectivity also plays an important role in maximising growth opportunities from Africa’s growing economy and South Africa’s BRICS membership.

The event will draw industry leaders from around the world. The 2012 IATA AGM and WATS held earlier in Beijing attracted 750 top airline representatives and drew 350 journalists.

South African Airways is set to be host airline to the conference and hopes to address air travel safety in Africa, among other issues.

Cape Town Tourism CEO, Mariette du Toit-Helmbold said: 'Direct air access to and from key source markets and developing markets remains a critical issue for Cape Town. Ease of entry to the destination is essential to stimulate and sustain Cape Town’s tourism sector and this is a conversation that needs to happen with airline partners. The hosting of this conference is an excellent opportunity for Cape Town to showcase how multifaceted it is, while also contributing to its reputation as a 365-day business destination.'

The conference will take place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.