Wondering when in-person business events will restart? This new chart could hold the answer

The timeline for the return of Australia’s business events industry has become a whole lot clearer, thanks to a new chart detailing the country’s plans.

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s newly-formed Tourism Restart Taskforce approved the timetable for business events, venues and attractions, and domestic and international travel, at its weekly meeting last Friday.

According to the proposed timetable, the gradual return of business events in Australia would begin in July with events of fewer than 100 patrons, and business events with more than 100 attendees would begin to return in September.

Ticketed events with more than 100 attendees wouldn’t restart until 15 October, under the proposed timeline.

Whether the timetable is followed will ultimately be up to Australia’s federal and state governments. However, several key departments are already working towards these dates, according to 7News.

The timetable, which was recently shared on LinkedIn by Jon Hart, the executive chairman of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s tourism division, was met with criticism on social media from some of the MICE industry’s heavy hitters, who all called for a faster return of business events.

“We should be able to re-open safely with 100 pax sooner than has been proposed in the timetable for stage four,” Joyce DiMascio of The Venues Collection said.

“Our sector can track attendees at any kind of event – conference, wedding, expo, dinners.  We’ve had tracking software in place long before any COVID-19 app. We can socially distance and we can and have introduced sanitation.

“Would you please do all you can in your position of tremendous influence to also support the events industry. You’ve done a great job for the restaurants and pubs. We need this for our sectors – our venues were the first to close – and it looks like we’ll be the last to re-open.

Spiro Anemogiannis, managing director at Informa Australia, said an August start date for business events with more than 100 patrons is “achievable in a bio-safe environment”.

“At business events, we can track everyone who comes to our venues. We can social distance. We can run multiple events in different rooms at our venues and run them safely,” he said.

“We have easy access to online registration tools and at venue tools that enable us to manage who [attends] and how many attend. We also can and have introduced sanitation protocols.”