Sandton hosts top soccer expo

Meshack Motloung

Meshack Motloung

South Africa will host one of the world's biggest soccer exhibitions, Soccerex, in Sandton from November next year until 2009.

The event, which is being hosted on the African continent for the first time, is expected to attract unprecedented attention, especially because it takes place in the country during the build-up to the 2010 Fifa World Cup.

The awarding of this event to the Gauteng provincial government marks another important milestone in efforts to make the city a premier destination for competitive sport and the "home of champions".

Gauteng MEC for sport Barbara Creecy said Soccerex was the football industry's biggest exhibition and conference.

"We have over the past few years made great strides in building Gauteng's reputation as a preferred home of competitive sport," said Creecy.

"We have increasingly been attracting to our province major sporting and other events. We have indeed become a home of champions."

Paul Mashatile, MEC for finance and economic affairs, said there will be significant opportunities for both direct and indirect job creation, business, investment and tourism.

Soccerex chief executive Duncan Revie said he was proud to be bringing the convention to Gauteng and South Africa, pointing to the economic benefits for the province and country.