First launched in 2006, the Conference Ambassador Programme (CAP) is an initiative of the Singapore Exhibition and Convention Bureau™ (SECB) to cultivate a pool of business leaders in Singapore from diverse industries and provide valuable opportunities for them to network with one another.

The strong relationships that have been thus built have played a key role in helping Singapore to secure quality conventions and conferences across the years, propelling the island-republic as the place to be for a meeting of great minds.

In addition to building rewarding connections, CAP also provides access to professional training and education opportunities pertaining to conference and association management for its members, in order to equip them with the skills and competency to champion Singapore’s MICE industry as being a cut above the rest.

Together with the SECB, the current team of close to 50 conference ambassadors have worked tirelessly to drive interest in such business opportunities. In the last three years alone, the CAP has helped Singapore win bids to host 17 world congresses and international association conventions which are slated to bring in almost 50,000 visitors and over S$120 million in tourism receipts.

“It is the steadfast dedication and efforts of these local champions that have helped us build a strong pipeline of meetings and events for Singapore. Over the past decade, we have enjoyed successful collaborations with these passionate individuals, all of whom have been key in securing congresses and shaping Singapore’s reputation as a leading business events destination,” said Jeannie Lim, executive director of SECB.

Setting its sights on bigger things ahead, SECB aims to raise the bar by leveraging its enhanced Business Events in Singapore (BEiS) scheme to provide stronger support to both ambassadors and local associations in the lead-up to bidding for events on the world stage.

“Our ambassadors have shared with us the importance of networking with key influencers prior to bidding for events. We have thus enhanced the BEiS scheme to support local association members in attending relevant global business events, so that they can start their lobbying activities earlier and increase their chances of winning the rights to host their desired association events,” Lim added.

Thanks to the concerted efforts of both CAP and SECB, success stories, like the bid to host the International Congress on Endocrinology (ICE) 2022, have become reality.

Dr Vivien Lim. Image Source: Docdoc

Dr Vivien Lim, conference ambassador and president of the Endocrine and Metabolic Society of Singapore, said: “We usually host a regional advanced endocrinology course once every two years. As such, the society thought it was long overdue that we hosted a large international one. This would be an excellent opportunity for furthering Singapore as a medical hub, to help foster ties and collaboration both regionally and internationally.”

To that end, Dr Lim set about writing to the heads of all the endocrine societies in Southeast Asia, as well as to the heads of relevant local societies, inviting them to connect and show their support for the venture.

Also helping Singapore to emerge victorious is the unique standing of the city-state as a stable, secure and vibrant cosmopolitan city, with world-class medical facilities and expertise, and a well-established endocrine community.

Another success story is the Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics Pacific Rim (CLEO PR) 2017, with Professor Perry Shum, conference ambassador and director of Photonics Centre of Excellence (School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at Nanyang Technological University), leading the charge.

He and his team highlighted to their international counterparts what Singapore had to offer in terms of stellar meeting venues and its facilities to the international community, resulting in the winning bid.

With such strong advocacy by the conference ambassadors and the supportive partnership with SECB, Singapore continues to make its mark on the global meetings stage.