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Green Meetings": UN City Bonn still going strong

Green Meetings": UN City Bonn still going strong ( A series of UN sustainability conferences kicked off in Bonn on 12 May. The event marathon ending on 12 June will be a major success both for thousands of delegates and Bonn's GCB members, strengthening the city decisively as a location for “green meetings".

Frankfurt/Main, 6 June 2008. From 12 to 16 May the Parties to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety convened in Bonn. From 19 May the German environment ministry staged the 9th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity with 5,000 delegates. And hosted by the UN Climate Change Secretariat (UNFCCC), a preparatory conference focusing on a successor to the Kyoto Protocol has been attended by 2,500 delegates since 2 June. Ending after almost five weeks on 12 June, the congress marathon will be a major success not only for countless UN delegates but also for the Bonn members of the German Convention Bureau (GCB).

The 9th United Nations Conference on Biodiversity takes centre stage among these talks. The spectacular event was expressly commended not only by the chancellor and her environment minister but also by the delegations themselves. “In terms of delegate and overnight figures this conference was the largest of its kind ever in Bonn," says a happy Tilmann Flaig, director of Tourismus&Congress GmbH Bonn. “The beneficial impacts, especially of the speeches by Ms. Merkel und Mr. Gabriel, generated priceless publicity for the city." Hans R. Schaden, director of MARITIM Hotel Bonn, is also thrilled: “For over ten years our spacious conference facilities have already been a regular venue for UN conferences. The smooth organisation of this conference, also staged at MARITIM, is further proof that Bonn has now become a major green meetings destination."

Invited by the German government, the UN established itself in Bonn in the 1990s. “Sustainable Development" was its focus. Today, 17 mainly sustainability-related UN organisations are located there. “The German government is interested in attracting further organisations to the UN Campus," reveals Alexander Saier of the UN Climate Change Secretariat (UNFCCC). “So there will definitely be more meetings and conventions on green topics in Bonn within the next few years, and a good meetings infrastructure is essential."

This is good news for World Conference Center Bonn (WorldCCBonn), which will open an extension including a 4-star superior hotel in late 2009. “Many UNFCCC workshops and meetings will be spread over the year with 10 to 400 attendees," says Alexander Saier. “They will be accommodated increasingly in the WorldCCBonn's extension, which will provide us with major additional capacities." And Thomas Hagbeck, spokesman of the German environment ministry, confirms: “The UN Conference on Biodiversity was the first conference of the German government to receive an EMAS certificate, showing that Bonn is an excellent place for staging UN conferences. Once the WorldCCBonn has been completed, the framework conditions will be even better."

Matthias Schultze, Vice President of SMI HYUNDAI Management GmbH, which manages the WorldCCBonn, sees the conference centre in the context of the city's general sustainability efforts: “The sustainability topic is taken seriously and really practiced here. Bonn has joined the ICLEI (Local Governments for Sustainability) city network and the City Climate Alliance. The Sustainable Bonn project, in which we also participated with the WorldCCBonn, puts sustainability into practice. Sustainability should not just be a conference topic, the organisation and staging of the events themselves should also be more environment-conscious and environment-friendly. Both ecological and economical aspects will be key for building our extension."

And another GCB member is very happy: The Cologne-based multimedia company meta-fusion GmbH, which is responsible for webcasts from the 9th UN Conference on Biodiversity and the current UNFCCC meeting, won an international UNFCCC tender and received a three-year contract for webcasts until 2010. “Congress expertise beats size," recaps proud meta-fusion boss Thomas Berghausen, looking ahead optimistically: “The events of the last few weeks already gave us a taste of what awaits us on the UN Campus with the extended WorldCCBonn."

The GCB German Convention Bureau e.V. markets Germany as a destination for conventions, meetings, events and incentives both on a national and international level, and is the place to contact for anybody planning an event in Germany. Its 246 members include leading hotels, convention centres and destinations, car hire firms, event agencies and service providers of the German meetings and conventions industry. Maritim Hotels and Leipzig Tourismus und Marketing GmbH are Preferred Partners of the GCB.

The GCB is an interface between organisers of meetings and conventions and suppliers of the German meetings market, offers advice and support for planning and organising events, and provides contacts and addresses. Its website features an online search facility for meeting venues, newsletter, Germany guide and a lot more.

Further information and press releases about GCB German Convention Bureau e.V. on:

GCB German Convention Bureau e.V. Münchener Str. 48 60329 Frankfurt/Main Germany Tel: +49 (0)69 - 24 29 30 0 Fax: +49 (0)69 - 24 29 30 26 E-mail: Website: Press contact: Ms. Ute Stegmann, Tel: +49 69 - 24 29 30 13, e-mail:

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