Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, recently announced a A$50
million (US$36.46 million) injection to steamroll the country's business
events industry, these funds coming out of a $1 billion Covid-19 relief
fund for sectors severely affected by the pandemic.
Under this programme, approved business events, including
conventions, incentives and exhibitions, are eligible for upfront grants
that cover up to 50 per cent of planning costs (between $10,000 and
$250,000). This is hoped to get money flowing through the supply chain
as quickly possible.
“This is much needed support for our industry and recognises the
contribution business events can make to the recovery of our economy,"
said Kate Smith, chair of industry body, Meetings & Events
"Our membership represents the entire supply chain of specialists
needed to create and deliver outstanding business events — large, medium
and small enterprises as well as sole operators and freelancers — all
have been significantly impacted by Covid-19 and this support is a
positive step towards our recovery.”
By March 2020, 90 per cent of business events in Australia had been
cancelled or postponed. In a recent survey by the Business Events
Council of Australia (BECA), 67 per cent of businesses said they don’t
have any events confirmed for 2020, while 48 per cent said they don't
have any confirmations for 2021.
This prompted BECA to highlight the severity of the pandemic’s impact on the industry.
“BECA’s goal is to not only to support the business events industry
itself, but to also maximise the contribution business events make to
the recovery of the wider economy. This support package will be pivotal
to that,” said BECA chair, Vanessa Findlay.
Australia hosted more than 480,000 business events, with more 43 million attendees, in 2019.