Business News

ICCA Opens New Office in Panama

Panama City skyline

Skift Take

ICCA's expansion in Latin America and the Caribbean is the latest development in a continued collaboration with PROMTUR. The country's destination marketing organization is working to position Panama as an attractive hub for international associations.

Today, the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA) announced the establishment of a new office at the Panama Association Hub (PAH). This strategic move aims to expand the association’s presence in Latin America and the Caribbean.

The office was set up in collaboration with PROMTUR, Panama’s destination management organization and an ICCA association partner. The PAH launched in August as a public-private partnership to attract international associations to establish offices in Panama.

“Only four locations in the world have an associative model: Brussels, Washington, D.C., Singapore, and Dubai. The PAH is the first in the region, positioning Panama as the main gateway for knowledge, innovation, and meetings throughout the region, providing a unique platform for international associations seeking to expand their presence, reach and legacy in Latin America and the Caribbean,” said Fernando Fondevila, CEO of PROMTUR Panama.

“We’re thrilled to establish our office among some of the most-recognized names in tech, NGOs, and academia in the City of Knowledge, Panama City, a hot spot for collaboration, knowledge-sharing, and inspiration — a centre for forward-thinking businesses and associations in the region,” said Senthil Gopinath, ICCA CEO.

Regional Strategy

ICCA has a strong presence in Latin America, a region it considers strategically important for its own development. The new office will complement its existing regional office in Montevideo, Uruguay. This investment highlights the region as an attractive market for international associations and their meetings. The association has an active Latin America and the Caribbean chapter, chaired by Eugenia Powell, director of business development at PROMTUR.

ICCA endorses FIEXPO Latin America, an annual industry trade show founded by past ICCA President Arnaldo Nardone in Panama. Furthermore, Santiago González, past ICCA regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean, is among FIEXPO’s key staff members.

“ICCA is proud to be part of the Panama Association Hub (PAH) ecosystem, recognizing the outstanding work of our association partners, PROMTUR,” “For the past three years, Panamá has invested decisively in the development and consolidation of Panama’s association and scientific ecosystem. We congratulate PROMTUR’s team, our local members, and key stakeholders involved in this process,” said Andres Escandon, ICCA regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean.

ICCA will join organizations such as UNICEF, the Red Cross, the U.S. Peace Corps, the United Nations Development Programme, and the World Food Program, all of which have regional offices established in Panama’s City of Knowledge.