Australia/NZ Supplement March/April 2022 - Page 23

Darwin CC

Champions in the Top End

Peter Savoff , general manager Darwin Convention Centre ( DCC ) explains how the venue is poised to resume recovery
n 2021 Interstate Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns continued to pose serious challenges to the national events industry and to operations at the DCC . It was increasingly difficult to host national and international conferences as travel sentiment declined and decision-makers were forced to halt plans .
Aerial view of Darwin , NT . Photo : Tourism NT / Shaana McNaught
Despite these challenges , the Centre managed to retain many of its clients by working to reschedule and postpone events , rather than cancel . This strategy effectively shuffled confirmed bookings into 2022 , 2023 and later years .
NT Airboat travelling across the floodplains . Photo : Tourism NT / Daniel Tran
We are continuing to successfully secure bids for conferences to be held from 2022-2025 and beyond . Those include the International Foster Carer Organisation Conference ( June 2022 ), the World Conference on Ecological Restoration ( 2023 ) the Congress of the International Society for the Study of Iron in Biology and Medicine ( 2023 ) and the Quadrennial Congress of the World Federations of Neuroscience Nurses ( 2025 ).
We recently launched our inaugural Darwin Convention Centre Bid
Champion Grant programme supported by NT Business Events and Tourism Australia . It is designed to support increased awareness of Darwin and the Top End as an outstanding business events destination by encouraging industry professionals and field experts to become international conference Bid Champions .
Two grants of A $ 5,000 will be awarded across two rounds of funding to support successful Bid Champion Grant applicants with the aim to identify future international conferences that have the potential to be held in Darwin . The programme provides individuals the opportunity to attend an international conference in their chosen field and establish connections with professional colleagues . Grant monies can be used to assist with travel to a prospective international conference , membership fees and conference registration , or other costs associated with the bid process . Successful applicants must be willing to serve as a global ambassador for the region .
We are beginning to see ‘ green shoots ’ of business confidence returning and expect a steady resumption for 2022 as domestic corporate travel resumes , followed by an uptake in international visitation towards the end of the year , without travellers requiring to endure onerous quarantine periods .
At DCC we now operate under strict protocols of the NT Department of Health , in addition to our own ASM Global VenueShield procedures . The implementation of these strict guidelines has allowed the Centre to hold large public gatherings throughout the pandemic with safe outcomes .
Outdoor Gala Dinner at DCC