The Greek Marinas Association (GMA) was named host of the 2018 ICOMIA World Marinas Conference (IWMC) during a meeting of the ICOMIA Marinas Group in Vancouver on 14 October. The world-renowned travelling conference will take place from 25–27 October 2018 in Athens, Greece.
IWMC is the key initiative of the ICOMIA Marina Group’s outreach and support programme, aimed at marina owners, operators, developers, consultants, service providers, government officials, equipment manufacturers, nautical tourism promoters, and port and harbour operators, attracting hundreds of delegates and speakers from around the world.
IWMC is presented by ICOMIA Marinas Group (IMG), which came about with recognition that ensuring boat owners have a safe and convenient place to berth, moor or launch their boat is vital to the future of the industry.
The Greek Marinas Association was established in 2010 and has been an active member of IMG since 2011, representing, upgrading and promoting tourist ports and marina facilities throughout Greece. Its membership includes 77% of the total regional berthing capacity, and includes public and private marinas focused on quality, safety and customer satisfaction.
President of the GMA, Stavros Katsikadis, highlighted the importance of this win for Greek marinas as well as the city of Athens saying, "I'm confident IWMC 2018 will be a high-performing, world class event. Delegates will benefit from quality content and the expertise of the exceptional international speakers IWMC attracts. Athens promises to them an unforgettable experience."
IMG Chairman, Roberto Perocchio, also praised the decision, saying, "The Greek coast is one of the most beautiful cruising grounds of the world for nautical tourism, and the international community of marina operators will now gather there in 2018 to discuss global trends and be inspired by the new marina investments that can be developed in this country thanks to privatisation programmes, urban waterfront rejuvenation projects and increased importance of tourism economy”.
“The Mayor of Athens has expressed his full support of IWMC 2018, as have other local and national authorities – this confirms the leading role that Greece plays at an international level in the field of yachting facilities and services." he added.
IMG members at the autumn meeting in Vancouver last week
The decision to award GMA the bid took place during IMG’s autumn meeting in Vancouver last week, hosted by Sara Anghel, Executive Director of NMMA Canada. A group of 13 IMG members attended and had the opportunty to tour 10 marinas on the west coast, suitable for sailboats, power boats and larger yachts.
Commenting, Sara said, “NMMA Canada was honoured and pleased to have the opportunity to host the IMG meeting in Canada. The recreational boating industry in Canada is worth $10 billion CDN in revenues and $5.6 billion in GDP impact. There are nearly 1500 marinas in Canada and almost half of Canada’s population goes boating each year.”
The IWMC series is a valuable platform for marina professionals, providing networking opportunities as well as the opportunity to view the latest in marina product development and technology. More information on the programme for 2018, including sponsorship opportunities and registration will be announced in due course.
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