Guest comment with Business Events Council of Australia chairman Ton van Amerongen

Guest comment with Business Events Council of Australia chairman Ton van Amerongen
By admin


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Email the Travel Weekly team at traveldesk@travelweekly.com.au

Guest comment with Business Events Council of Australia chairman Ton van Amerongen

Guest comment with Business Events Council of Australia chairman Ton van Amerongen
By admin


As we move into a new year, the biggest issue facing the business events industry is without question, awareness. We need to make government and other sectors of our society more conscious of the business events sector and the significant contribution our members collectively make to the economy and to the growth of other industries. Some countries, like Singapore, worked out the value of business events many years ago, but we still have a way to go in Australia.

To achieve greater awareness, we need action on a number of fronts.  At the grass roots, meeting and event organisers need to be active players in the industry, working cohesively through their relevant industry bodies to raise awareness of the value of business events.

At an association level, BECA is tackling the issue by forming an alliance with the Tourism & Transport Forum to ramp up the profile of the industry and garner more government support. Advocacy hasn’t really been part of BECA’s brief in the past, but we see it as a key to the industry’s future.

We need to raise the profile of the industry through advocacy and research, and ensure that the policymakers understand how business events can help the government achieve economic and other strategic objectives.

The tourism and business events industries have a symbiotic relationship, although our goals are not as simple as funding. Tourism infrastructure such as hotels and transport systems support business events, so we need government policy which understands this relationship.

As we work to raise awareness, it’s important for the industry to keep thinking ahead.  We’ve seen an expansion of meeting infrastructure around Australia in recent years, but the biggest mistake we could make is to sit on our hands and assume we have nothing more to do. We have to start thinking about the future needs of the industry and begin planning for 2020 and beyond, otherwise we’re going to find ourselves back in the same spot, restricted by insufficient facilities.

Email the Travel Weekly team at traveldesk@travelweekly.com.au

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