Regional collaboration as a key to success


ICCA Central European Chapter Summer Meeting 2014, was held from 27th to 29th August 2014, in Belgrade, Serbia.

Every year ICCA CEC Summer Meeting brings to the delegates the opportunity to discuss actual topics in dynamically changing international meeting industry. In 2013 the hosted city was St. Petersburg, Russia and for 2015 host will be chosen soon and announced at the ICCA Congress in November, this year.

Mrs Ana GorskaICCA Central European Chapter is one of the largest in the association. Its members include organizations from Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Poland, Russia, Ukraine, Hungary and Czech, and its annual meeting takes place in different city every year, with educational and networking character.

This year, ICCA CEC 2014, brought more than 60 delegates to Belgrade, Serbia. It has been performed under the theme “Strategic Alliances and Regional Cooperation in the Meeting Industry” and correspondence to the regional cooperation and development.

Apart from educational benefits, delegates had a chance to share tradition, history, culture and the way of entertaining and enjoying life with Serbian people.

After the meeting we had an honor to speak with Mrs Anna Gorska, ICCA Central European Chapter Chairperson, CEO of Gdansk Convention Bureau.


1. What are the main issues discussed at ICCA Central European Chapter Summer Meeting?

This year our meeting was divided into 4 panels:

  • Strategic Alliances – Advanced Model of Collaboration
  • Regional Initiatives – Proactive frame of work
  • Regional Associations – Think Global, Act Regional
  • Regional Meetings – New Business Perspective

Every year we have a diverse group of participants, some from CVBs, some from venues, others from PCOs etc. It is very important to try to make the topics interesting for all of them.


2. ICCA CEC Meeting was held for the first time in Belgrade. What are the reasons to choose Belgrade and Serbia for a host?
ICCA (International Congress and Convention Association) represents one of the major international associations in the meeting industry and comprises almost 1,000 member companies and organisations in over 90 countries worldwide.

We are always looking for a new destinations to hold our meetings in. The purpose of our annual Summer Meeting is not only education, getting new business contacts but also to get to know new potential meetings destinations within the frame of Central Europe Chapter. We also need a strong support from the local host and here we had a great one from Serbia Convention Bureau who did their job wonderfully.


3. How many delegates attended at the meeting and from which countries?

There were 64 delegates this year from countries such as Germany, Austria or Poland who always attend our meeting as well as from such as Azerbaijan, Slovakia, Bulgaria who were there for the first time. It means that both the programme and the destination were attractive for them.


ICCA CEC 20144. According to opinions of delegates and your impression, what is Belgrade like for meetings?

Belgrade is a very dynamic city with a lot to offer, good airport with lots of direct connections, good infrastructure and professional people. I think it will developed very rapidly within couple of years and we see more and more conferences organized here.


5. What are conclusions and plans for the future?

I think our meeting was a great success, thanks to the good programme, good speakers, engagement of the host Serbia Convention Bureau team and a vivid destination. Many of the participants described it as the “best ever”. It means that we will have a lot of work while organizing the next year’s Summer meeting. As far as chapter matters, we will have a next meeting during upcoming ICCA Congress in Antalya, Turkey and we need to start preparing it very soon.


“The mark point is the process of collaboration and teamwork between regional congress destinations to produce the synergistic effect in the meeting industry.

For South East Europe region it is very important to establish SEE meetings and events and for that reason it has been stressed the chance of taking the initiative in the process of regional collaboration and creating regional associations in different fields.

This event was a great opportunity to meet with potential clients and colleagues to jointly implement state of mind in the meeting industry, as a tool for enhancing our societies on knowledge based principles and to discuss about the future trends in Regional Meetings and Associations.”

Serbia Convention Bureau



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