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After an intense promotion campaign, the Colombian capital city of Bogota was chosen as the host of the 5th UCLG’s World Summit of Local and Regional Governments in 2016, which will gather more than 1,000 cities from 95 different countries.
UCLG, based in Barcelona, Spain, represents and defends the interests of local governments on the world stage, regardless of the size of the communities they serve.
UCLG members gather every three years in a different country. After Mexico, Colombia is the second country in the region chosen to host the event. This appointment was made in Rabat, Morocco, with the presence of Susana Muhamad, Bogota's City Hall Secretary General, and Alexandra Torres, Bogota Convention Bureau’s Executive Director, acting as candidacy advocates.
In order to win the nomination, the candidacy committee set up a 646 ft² booth, published a magazine aimed at decision makers, made a video to show the services available in the city, and gave a speech about the role of people as a key factor in a city’s transformation.
“Being appointed as the host for the UCLG summit is the result of the integration and joint efforts by the public and private sectors, proving once more our leadership in Latin America,” stated the Bogota Convention Bureau’s Executive Director, Alexandra Torres.
The candidacy efforts were supported by Bogota's City Hall, the Chamber of Commerce of Bogota, Invest in Bogota, the Presidency of the Republic, the Bogota Convention Bureau, and Proexport.
According to Alexandra Torres, “this is not only the greatest event in the city’s recent history, but also the most important event from a political point of view. This candidacy is a great achievement for both Colombia and the rest of Latin America; being part of such events brings new knowledge and promotes the exchange of ideas, which are the foundations of today’s market globalization.”
Proexport, the office in charge of promoting Colombia as a destination for international events, supported the campaign to place Bogota on top of 20 other cities, and in the second stage beat the Turkish capital city.
“In 2016, approximately 3,000 local and regional leaders will visit Bogota for 4 days, when they will have the chance to live the unique experiences the capital city can provide, and will learn why Colombia is magical realism,” declared the President of Proexport, Maria Claudia Lacouture.
The city offers visitors unique experiences through its tourism options including, culture, wellness, shopping, and gastronomy.
“The 5th World Summit of Local and Regional Governments is without a doubt, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to spark the curiosity of international visitors so that they yearn to return and explore Colombia and its attractions. It's a known fact that, when event attendants have a good experience, they return with their families to enjoy their vacations” added Lacouture.