Business Events Council of Australia criticizes government plans to shut down payments in COVID disaster

The Business Events Council of Australia is concerned and disappointed by the Australian government’s announcement to withdraw payments in the event of a COVID-19 disaster in line with vaccination targets achieved by states and territories, with no indication of a lifeline targeted replacement.

Earlier this week, the federal government announced plans to begin withdrawing emergency support payments from people saying that once a state or territory has fully immunized 70% of people over 16, it will stop the automatic renewal of payment in the event of a COVID-19 disaster for people.

The government has also announced that people will have to start claiming the payment again every week to remain eligible and once a state or territory has fully immunized 80% of people over 16, it will withdraw its stimulus payments after fifteen. days.

The decision to end JobKeeper’s payments in March 2021 devastated the visitor and events industry as it was a key mechanism for keeping employees connected to employers and supporting productivity in an uncertain environment with business opportunities. ‘limited operation. COVID-19 disaster payments have supported the welfare of BECA’s workforce during recent shutdowns, but given the uncertainty the industry still faces, they continue to see the leakage of specialized skills to other sectors offering greater stability.

The BECA says the move ignores the nature of the trade events sector and the restrictions still encountered, even when states emerge from blockages.

The industry has been decimated over the past 18 months due to:

  • Manage cancellations and postponements due to lockdowns
  • Host restricted business events under strict COVID-19 protocols and capabilities
  • Works with limited or no income streams
  • Dealing with a brain drain as businesses struggle to survive
  • Confront constant uncertainty

BECA stresses that national conferences and exhibitions cannot be marketed within two weeks, once an individual state or territory achieves 80% full vaccination, especially as long as internal borders remain closed. With a significant number of delegates and exhibitors unable to travel freely in Australia, the commercial viability of many in-person business events is threatened even if the host destination allows the event to take place. Commercial event companies will not resume large-scale operations when these vaccination milestones are reached.

BECA Vice-President Geoff Donaghy notes that “while we are very supportive of the government’s national plan and the roll-out of vaccination, this cannot be confused with the ability of the trade events sector to trade.

“When restrictions are lifted, business events cannot just kick in like other industries. Significant time is needed to book, plan and organize business events, which is why targeted and sustained support for our industry is needed until 2022.

“It will take at least 6 to 12 months for commercial events to fully prepare, confirm program content, seek sponsors and exhibitors, and market the event to attract delegate registrations. “

The Treasurer’s announcement will result in the departure of more qualified professionals, eroding BECA’s core capabilities and making recovery even more difficult.

Donaghy added that “our once thriving business events industry which contributed $ 36 billion to the economy and supported 230,000 jobs before the pandemic needs government support at this time of most urgent need and should not. not be involved in the Federation debate going on right now. . “

As long as governments, state, or federal hamper the ability of the trade events industry to operate freely, through lockdowns, border closures, and any COVID-19 restrictions, the BECA calls on governments to take action to support the sector. Lives and livelihoods are in danger right now, which is why this announcement is a blow to those in the business events sector who are struggling to survive and support their people.

Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said if individuals still have not returned to the workforce once an economy has opened and the disaster payout has been completely withdrawn, they will need to apply for the allowance. normal unemployment.

Related Articles

August 17, 2021 – The Business Events Council of Australia calls on the federal government for urgent support

August 4, 2021 – Business Events Council of Australia supports call for rapid vaccinations

April 19, 2021 – The Business Events Council of Australia welcomes the continued support of Tourism Australia

June 17, 2020 – Business Events Council of Australia highlights impact of COVID-19 shutdown

May 14, 2020 – Business Events Council of Australia presents COVIDSafe guidelines to government

September 20, 2021 – SkyCity Adelaide and Business Events Australia launch virtual tour of events at SkyCity

September 7, 2021 – Support for New Zealand trade events sector essential as Tier 2 restrictions are introduced

September 3, 2021 – Stakeholders in New South Wales trade events say reopening certainty is vital for industry to survive

September 3, 2021 – Cancellations caused by ongoing lockdowns drop revenue for Victorian event businesses by 80%

September 1, 2021 – Business Events Industry Aotearoa Conference moved to November 2021

August 10, 2021 – Tourism and hotel businesses in Queensland to receive new COVID-19 support


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