Having been to the PCMA Convening Leaders 2020 in San Francisco this year, CIM has witnessed first-hand the incredible level of support from the North American business events sector following the devastating bushfires at home.
The first question was always ‘what can we do to help?’, with the answer being just keep coming.
But now on a domestic front, that ethos is being applied to the local business events industry, with a new call to keep their events in Australia.
The Business Events Australia campaign Event Here This Year was launched by Federal Tourism Minister Simon Birmingham, who emphasised how important the sector is to the visitation economy.
“Business events are one of the most crucial sectors of our tourism industry,” he said.
“However, the sector has taken a hit in recent months with increases in cancelled events as well as a reduction in international event bookings, even in regions that haven’t been affected by the recent bushfires.
“This campaign is a call to all of those Australian businesses and organisations out there who are yet to book in meetings, their annual conference or exhibitions, to rally behind our tourism industry and choose Australia for their event this year.”
He called on the business events sector to rally behind both the bushfire effected regions and beyond, by holding their events both large and small at home.
“This is a huge opportunity for Aussie businesses to support communities across Australia, whether it is those in fire-affected regions or other communities across Australia who are also feeling the pain from less visitors,” he said.
The Association of Australian Convention Bureaux (AACB) welcomed the campaign which is part of the Federal Government’s $76 million Tourism Recovery Fund.
“Not many business events destinations across Australia were directly impacted by the bushfires, however some regional destinations are still feeling the impacts of other recent natural disasters,” said AACB CEO Andrew Hiebl.
“Business events are typically long lead, but this targeted campaign will stimulate the short-term domestic meetings market and provide a much-needed boost to their local economies.”
With the outbreak of the coronavirus from China also set to impact visitor numbers to Australia, Hiebl said a much needed boost in the domestic business events market over the next year could offset some impacts of international travel uncertainty at this time.
“We look forward to working with the Australian Government and Tourism Australia on any future business events initiatives to further stimulate the industry and jobs,” Hiebl said.