Melbourne, 25 October 2016 – It is estimated the recent 23rd World Congress on Intelligent Transport Systems, at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, benefited the Melbourne economy by $25 million.
With 11,496 registered delegates, the 2016 ITS World Congress is the largest international association conference held in Australia this year and the second largest international association conference ever held in Melbourne.
Representatives from 73 countries heard from 663 speakers in 236 sessions. Delegates booked 659 technical tours at 17 traffic and transport centres.
Melbourne’s roads and Albert Park, home of the Australian Formula One Grand Prix, were the venues for 3,618 vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure demonstrations.
Kenneth Leonard, Director, US Department of Transportation said the Congress was a “Fantastic event. Best one I have attended” and Leon Daniels, Managing Director Surface Transport, Transport for London said “What a really good World Congress. Huge learnings and great company”.
ITS Australia CEO, Susan Harris said the Congress not only benefited the local economy, it also spiked interest in the industry.
“It was important to maximise Australia’s role as host and to ensure domestic governments, agencies, organisations and small businesses had the right environment to engage and do business on a global scale,” Ms Harris said.
“From the Prime Minister’s official opening, to Federal and States governments, cities and local councils, we had tremendous support across the board. The quality of delegates was high with a number of Senior Executives participating throughout the week.
“It is too early to put a dollar figure on the benefit to industry, however we are aware of several signings of Memorandum of Understanding (MOUs) and announcements of business partnerships and new innovations,” Ms Harris said.
One goal of the 2016 ITS World Congress was to encourage next generation ITS leaders and engage members of the public.
“We were delighted that nearly 2,500 members of the community attended the Congress. There was an extensive schools and university program, and two Open for Public days, which included three Melbourne Conversations. It is important for end users, who are driving change, to be engaged in the journey to build trust in emerging technology,” Ms Harris said.
ITS Australia announced during the Congress that it had reached the significant milestone of one hundred members, and the Congress has resulted in a number of follow up enquiries and opportunities.
“As the peak national ITS association, it was pleasing to see our members leverage the Congress to promote their brand and profile.
“ITS Australia was already in a strong position before the Congress, however our members and the local industry is now well placed to utilise their networks to continue to attract new business and develop and deploy new technologies which will make journeys safer, more efficient and sustainable,” said Ms Harris.