With the COVID-19 pandemic changing daily, we’re rounding up the latest updates and information relevant to events professionals.
Here are the biggest stories you need to know for the week ahead:
PM announces dedicated funding for business events
The Federal Government has announced a $50 million funding boost to support the restart of Australia’s business events industry.
Part of the government’s $1 billion COVID-19 Relief and Recovery Fund, the Australian Business Events Grants Program will provide targeted support and drive confidence for the sector.
Approved business events, including meetings conventions, incentives and exhibitions, will be able to apply for upfront grants to cover up to 50 per cent of their costs (between $10,000 and $250,000).
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Australia’s $36 billion business events sector had virtually “ground to a halt” during the COVID-19 crisis.
“Getting business events up and running again will be a critical part of the recovery of our tourism industry, but will also have huge flow-on effects through the entire economy,” the Prime Minister said.
BECA chair Vanessa Findlay welcomed the funding announcement and said the industry is “deeply appreciative” of the support.
“We can now look to rebuilding business confidence and kick-starting momentum across the entire business events supply chain – for meetings, conventions, incentives and exhibitions,” she said.
Findlay said the council’s goal is to get money flowing throughout the supply chain as soon as possible.
Live events are back on in Sydney
A number of in-person business events have resumed across Sydney, in keeping with the government’s current 150-person limit on corporate gatherings.
In support of the restart of business events, annual boutique expo and conference Events Uncovered will return this week, taking place on 17 September at SMC Conference & Function Centre.
All the details and tickets are available here.
Victorian Premier reveals reopening plan
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has announced a COVID-19 recovery and reopening plan that will see a gradual easing of restrictions across the state.
Andrews said he wants the state to be “COVID Normal” by Christmas time.
From 11:59pm on 13 September, metropolitan Melbourne’s stage 4 restrictions will change, including easing the curfew to 9pm to 5am, allowing two people or a household to meet outdoors for two hours maximum and allowing one nominated visitor for those who live alone.
Restrictions will also ease slightly in regional Victoria, allowing up to five people to gather together in outdoor public places.
“By moving from stages to steps, we’re giving Victorians a long-term plan for our path out of restrictions and into COVID Normal,” said Andrews.
“Importantly, we want the whole of the state to be at COVID Normal by the end of the year – making sure family barbeques, summer holidays and a trip to the beach can all still happen.”
Event industry leaders to gather for free panel discussion
Three of the industry’s leading figures will gather for a free panel discussion on Thursday 17 September, to address the state of the business events industry.
Kicking off the Spice Knowledge Sessions at Events Uncovered, the free session will feature Robyn Johnson, CEO of Meetings and Events Australia; Claudia Sagripanti, chief executive of the Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia, and Vanessa Findlay, chair of Business Events Council of Australia.
Send your questions for the panel to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The session is free to attend both in-person at SMC Conference & Function Centre and virtually.
Tickets are available here.
Featured image: Events Uncovered 2019. Image credit: Mr. W Photography