Tourism Australia has launched an industry vaccination initiative called “It’s our best shot for events”.
The initiative encourages Australians to support the business events industry by getting vaccinated against Covid-19. The industry has been significantly impacted by ongoing lockdowns across the country and increased vaccination rates will allow travel restrictions to be eased and enable the industry to get back on track.
A toolkit of materials has been made available for event professionals to spread the word, which includes assets for social media, email signatures, Zoom backgrounds, and website stickers.
Meanwhile, the Business Events Council of Australia (BECA) is also supporting the national vaccination rollout with its "Give BE a Shot" campaign.
Similar to Tourism Australia's initiative, BECA's campaign supports the National Cabinet's four-step approach to reopen the Australian economy: 1) accelerate vaccinations, 2) vaccine transition to reduce quarantine and caps on vaccinated returning travellers, 3) with 80% herd immunity, Australia will go back to "baseline restrictions", and 4) reopening international borders.
Each phase of the plan will only move forward when vaccination thresholds are met, systematically removing restrictions, closures, and restarting international travel — all necessary factors for the business events industry to recover.
Still, BECA warns that the business events industry cannot be placed on hold until these targets are met.
Geoff Donaghy, BECA deputy chair, said: “Through BECA’s industry-wide network, we continue to work with our state and federal leaders to lobby for the support needed to build confidence.
"Prior to the recent lockdowns, our industry was clearly demonstrating how business events could be held safely, effectively and in compliance with state-based health protocols across the country. The nature of these highly organised and structured events, delegate behaviours, controlled settings, and the contact tracing frameworks we have in place sets us apart from mass gatherings.
"However, to further enhance our government engagement activities, we have formalised our relationship with the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry through membership, over and above our active role on the Tourism Restart Taskforce.”
BECA’s Recovery and Rebound Framework proposes a slew of initiatives including direct and targeted support for the business events industry.
One example is the Business Events Catalyst Fund, which outlines options of a rebate, incentive grant payment, non-refundable underwriting facility, or nation-wide event insurance scheme — designed to support Australian associations and corporations who continue to be affected by snap lockdowns and organisers denied of state-based business support due to restrictions.