TORONTO – (June 12, 2002) – BIO 2002, the world’s largest biotech convention, ended today with record-breaking numbers. More than 15,000 participants from 52 countries took part in the four-day conference, which included more than 1,000 exhibitors and speakers discussing everything from science and medicine to business development, ethics and religion. Nearly 400 journalists from around the world registered for the Toronto conference.
“We may come from different nations but science knows no geographic boundaries,” said Carl B. Feldbaum, president of the Biotechnology Industry Organization(BIO). “Our goal, which we met and indeed surpassed, was to bring together the world of biotechnology at BIO 2002. There is a new sense that our industry, and the benefits of its technology, are developing a global presence.
“For the first time, our convention had delegates from countries such as Turkey, Estonia and Cuba, as well as substantial representation from Asia. Also, for the first time a majority of our convention attendees came from outside the United States,” Feldbaum said.
Feldbaum noted that Toronto has “one of the most impressive biomedical research centers in North America, and in the future, it can become a biotech industry powerhouse.”
Feldbaum also paid tribute to the city of Toronto, the officials from all three levels of government who took part in the conference, the Metropolitan Toronto Police Department and the Metro Toronto Convention Centre staff who helped make BIO 2002 such a success.
“The city of Toronto was a gracious host, and we look forward to coming back,” said Feldbaum.
BIO 2002 is the largest conference planned for Toronto this year. The city’s Economic Development Commission estimates the total economic impact of the conference at around C$30 million.
BIO 2003 will take place June 22-25, in Washington, D.C.
BIO represents more than 1,000 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations in all 50 U.S. states and 33 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of health-care, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.
BIO 2002 CONFERENCE FACTS:
·15,565 registrants, the largest conference in the history of the biotechnology industry.
·4,300 registrants from outside North America.
·4,400 Canadian registrants and 7,400 from the United States.
·47 U.S. states and 28 nations represented in 1,055 exhibitor displays.