Rod Lockwood, the director of DE Group (Definitive Events Group), is calling for more answers and a detailed roadmap from the Victorian Government to reopen the events industry, amidst the state’s recent reopening of several other industries.
Lockwood, whose group owns several major events companies including GTR Events, GoFish Nagambie, Equine Productions and the Geelong Outdoor Living Show, says the events sector, along with hospitality and tourism are key economic drivers of the Victorian economy and whilst fitness, retail, beauty, cinemas and hospitality have received detailed support in the governments reopening roadmap, those in events have been left in the dark.
Victorian events companies are calling for certainty on dates for when events are expected to reopen, centralised rules and regulations on reopening and regulations on COVID safe plans.
Lockwood maintains that despite the key economic value of the events sector, the Government has failed to provide any direction or inclusions for this sector on its COVID roadmap.
“Due to the mass cancellations of 2020, the 2021 events calendar will be crowded and the industry (including venues and suppliers) needs to be able to commit to dates to properly structure the reopening of events in an orderly manner,” he said.
“Events are technologically innovative and have systems in place to track and contact trace attendees and workers in a detailed manner. Considering Queensland recently safely held the AFL Grand Final with 30,000 spectators, why can’t Victoria allow for events to commence with safely managed numbers as so many other states have done so?”