Business festival ‘will bring city £100m’

Liverpool Vision claims its £15m business festival next year will reap £100m for the city from inward investment and visitors.

The economic development agency has hired additional staff whilst also outsourcing the event management to a private supplier, Clarion Events, to prepare for the festival. Critics in the city question the cost of the event, £5m of which is being provided by the government.

The International Festival for Business 2014 will be a 61-day expo of conferences and cultural events in June and July 2014, forecast by Vision to attract 250,000 visitors to Liverpool.

Ministers hope the festival will boost UK exports and maintain the marketing momentum of the Olympics in 2012.

Lord Green, trade and investment minister, said: "Next summer the International Festival for Business will provide a global platform to promote the best of British and the outstanding opportunities to invest in this country. Coming two years after the Olympics, it will help ensure the message that Britain is open for business continues to be heard across the globe.

"Getting more companies to export and attracting high-quality investment to the UK are key planks of the government's Plan for Growth. UKTI is proud to support the Festival and we will be working hard to help make it a success."

The plans for the festival were presented at an event in London on Monday with speakers including Sir Terry Leahy, Liverpudlian former chief executive of Tesco; Lord Green; Cllr Joe Anderson, mayor of Liverpool.

Max Steinberg, chief executive of Liverpool Vision, said: "With a stellar line-up of speakers and supporters, the Festival will show the world that Liverpool is Britain at its best."

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