The government’s first annual conference this year cost the taxpayer over £38,000.

Having taken place at the Villa Marina in September over two days, the Isle of Man Government Conference saw more than 1,000 people attend panels and spotlight sessions.

The conference was advertised as a chance for the public to engage with politicians and officials and to learn about the government’s strategies for the island.

Revealed in a Freedom of Information response to Manx Radio, £10,430 was spent on technology for the event, with the future energy video costing £1,120.

For marking and promotion, £6,843.70 was spent, with £10,671 going towards general marketing.

Food and drink cost a total of £8,679.65, however a sponsor covered approximately £6,600 of that.

About £31,144 went towards external costs for the conference.

Government was charged £6,880 to hire the Villa Marina in Douglas, which is run by the Department of Education, Sport and Culture.

It was opened by Chief Minister Alfred Cannan in the Royal Hall as he set out the island’s 10 year economic strategy that includes increasing the population of the Isle of Man to 100,000 and growing the economy to £10 billion.

Mr Cannan said after the conference: ‘The Council of Ministers recognises and values the importance of collaborating in different ways as we progress with Our Island Plan, and this event marks an important development as it’s something that’s not been tried before.

‘What’s crucial now is for me to discuss with colleagues the clear themes that surfaced during the event and the feedback supplied more generally.

‘We will then determine how we can use this information to help us take sure steps going forward.’