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Keynote Speakers Wanted for Business Events around Australia

By | 2021

Business Events Perth is offering up to AUD25, 000 to help secure extraordinary keynote speakers for national business events anywhere in Australia.

For a limited time, Western Australia’s convention bureau is offering cash incentive to help business event planners lock in an outstanding headline speaker and in turn boost registrations for their 2021 business event.

Business Events Perth chief executive Gareth Martin said, the new fund was designed, to offer a helping hand to business events around Australia this year, which are still recovering from the impacts of the pandemic.

“We recognise that to revitalise the business events industry we need to invest in it and provide immediate support, so events can proceed with certainty.”

He further added: “That is why this offer is available to national business events taking place anywhere in Australia in 2021, not just in Western Australia. We have to support events that are taking place now, so they’ll still be here in the years to come.”

The right keynote speaker according to the chief executive can, inspire and motivate a conference audience, and a high-profile personality, is often a decision-making factor for delegates to attend a business event.

Eligible events can access up to 50 per cent of the funding once the speaker is confirmed.

The keynote speaker incentive is open to business events taking place before December 31, 2021 that have duration of three days or more, and a minimum of 200 in-person delegates.

This new funding is independent of other subvention funding offered by Business Events Perth for business events held in Western Australia.

You can find out about the full event eligibility and terms and conditions at: https://www.businesseventsperth.com/host-an-event/funding-incentives/keynote-speaker-incentive/keynote-speaker-incentive-terms-and-conditions/

International Travellers Get Medical Coverage on Covid-19 during Stay at Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts in Asia Pacific

By | 2021

Shangri-La Group now extends the programme of covid-19 medical coverage at no additional charge for international guests in its properties located in Southeast Asia, Australia, Hong Kong and Japan.

The programme will be introduced in phases beginning from April 2021, with hotels in Malaysia and Australia among the new inclusions.

Shangri-La Group is amongst the first international hotel chains to provide this automatic medical coverage for international guests, a move that builds on the Group’s heartfelt ‘Shangri-La Cares’ commitment as it seeks, to provide further assurance and peace of mind for guests travelling during this period.

To receive this covid-19 emergency medical coverage, international guests will have to book their stays at participating Shangri-La Hotel & Resorts properties for eligible check-in dates, and they will be automatically covered under the policy at no additional charge.

Underwritten by AIG, the coverage include emergency medical expenses of up to a total of USD184,000 for necessary medical costs that are reasonable should any guests, test positive for covid-19 during their stay.

The policy also covers additional accommodation which is for room only and travel expenses, should the guest, need to extend their stay for medical reasons due to covid-19. Guests can contact a dedicated AIG customer service team for assistance, if they are diagnosed with covid-19 during their stay. They will also have access to emergency travel assistance which is available around the clock during their trip.

Vancouver Convention Centre Opens a Community Vaccination Site

By | 2021

The local community can now receive their covid-19 vaccination at a new vaccination clinic located in the Vancouver Convention Centre’s East building.  The venue has partnered with the Government of British Columbia to open the clinic on March 29 and is also collaborating with Vancouver Coastal Health and other partners, to carry out the province’s immunisation plan.

Operated by Vancouver Coastal Health, the vaccination clinic at the Vancouver Convention Centre will employ workers from across the province’s tourism, hospitality and sport sectors to support the next phase of British Columbia’s covid-19 immunisation plan. The initiative will create more than 1,400 working opportunities and provide much-needed support to some of the province’s hardest hit industries.

In addition to this, the centre hosts the covid-19 Rapid Response Team for contract tracing, relaying test result and site for test processing.  The facility, Alternate Care Site in partnership with the Provincial Health Services Authority and BC Centre Disease Control has been able to accommodate response to the pandemic.

At the same time, the convention centre has enforced a comprehensive safety plan to help inform of current and future activity held at the centre. Recently, the convention centre, earned the Global Biorisk Advisory Star Facility accreditation, a cleaning industry gold standard for venues prepared for outbreak, prevention, response and recovery.

Singapore Introduces SG SafeEvents Certification for the MICE Sector to Prepare Resumption of Activities

By | 2021

The certification programme based on Technical Reference 84 developed by the Singapore Standards Council, is the first of its kind for enterprises in the country to achieve, competitive edge in the global MICE landscape.

Under the SG SafeEvents Certification, organisers are required to have a risk management plan with identified hazards documents and control measures that have, been implemented either before or during events. While venue operators, have to, ensure that a routine and periodic cleaning and disinfection plan is developed. Organisers and venue operators are also encouraged to use contactless technology where feasible.

The certification process takes into consideration the protocols that need to be put in place to contain and manage emergency situations.

While the Technical Reference 84 or TR 84 as it’s known, provides best practices for conducting events in a safe and responsible manner beyond what is covered under the government-mandated safe management measures which complements the Singapore Tourism Board’s ‘Safe Business Events’ framework.

Through TR 84, event organisers, venue owners, and suppliers in the MICE and events industry, are given guidelines as well as, best practices in: hygiene and sanitisation; safe distancing; and emergency management.

Singapore Association for Convention Exhibitions Organisers and Suppliers in the meantime, is working with Singapore’s NTUC Learning Hub to provide training for a team of SG SafeEvent Ambassadors whose role is specific to the requirements of the SG SafeEvent Standards.

To date, 700 ambassadors have undergone training and are ready to be mobilised onsite at events. SACEOS aims to increase the pool to 1,000 ambassadors by mid-2021 in anticipation of increased demand, when more events are organised.

TCEB Launches ‘MICE Winnovation’ a Suite of Tech Solutions for MICE Entrepreneurs to go Digital

By | 2021

The bureau is offering support to Thai MICE entrepreneurs through this programme, to embrace digital innovation and technology solutions in all aspects of event management for the purpose of business continuity, and long term competitiveness of Thailand’s MICE industry.

As  stated by the president of TCEB, Chiruit Isarangkun Na Ayuthaya: ‘MICE Winnovation’ will help MICE entrepreneurs in the country, to future-proof their businesses through innovation, while creating trade opportunities for start-ups and tech firms.

The  programme itself, is made up of four components: MICE Innovation Catalogue which is an online innovation and technology databank listing products and services for pre-event, onsite, and post-event management; Technomart  a business-matching platform for MICE entrepreneurs and start-ups throughout Thailand; Inno-Voucher  funding scheme to promote innovation implementation; and Digital Literacy for MICE an initiative to encourage MICE entrepreneurs to attend online or offline workshops where they can exchange ideas with experts to advance their digitalisation strategy.

TCEB is also set to launch a quarterly podcast this year, to help MICE professionals in the country to stay abreast of relevant technology and trends.

‘MICE Winnovation’ according to TCEB, is an expanded version of the bureau’s MICE innovation incubation programme started back in 2018.

UAE, Jordan and Netherlands to Tackle Challenges in Water, Energy and Food Security Together

By | 2021

Three of the countries are working to spotlight water, energy and food security.  The trilateral endevour will culminate in a high-level Water, Energy and Food Summit in January next year during the Expo 2020 Dubai.

The collaboration will leverage Expo 2020’s role as a global convener to spotlight the complex issues surrounding these three essential resources, and highlight the need for collective action, including an integrated resource management approach to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.

While the Summit will be the first initiative to focus on the regional and national policy steps needed to address these challenges in an ntegrated manner, the objectives are: to explore challenges in three sectors; identify policy level solutions; and strengthen research cooperation between the three countries.

Expo 2020 Dubai is the first World Expo hosted in the middle east, Africa and South Asia region which will held from October 1 this year to March 20, 2022.

Images above are the Expo 2020 Dubai Thematic Pavilions: Terra – Sustainability Pavilion, Alif – Mobility Pavilion and Missions Possible Opportunity Pavilion.

 

MICE in Asia has media accreditation with Expo 2020 Dubai.

Physical Trade Fairs Return with Messe Frankfurt’s Success in Asia and France

By | 2021

After a successful new start in China, Messe Frankfurt has held physical events in Japan and France. The regional Beautyworld Japan Fukuoka trade fair and Texworld Evolution Showroom Paris made face-to-face business encounters possible while complying with hygiene and safety standards.

At Beautyworld Japan Fukuoka, Messe Frankfurt’s first physical event in the 2021 calendar year, 122 exhibitors presented their products and services. The regional event for the beauty industry welcomed 3,818 visitors who were eager to discover the latest trends and products in the fields of cosmetics, perfumes, personal care and wellness.

“The success of these events makes it clear that trade fairs can also be held in Japan during the pandemic. The event followed up on the success of its sister event Beautyworld Japan West, which was in held October 2020 with 224 exhibiting companies and over 22,000 visitors,” said Stephan Buurma, managing director Asia, Messe Frankfurt.

While Texworld Evolution Paris–Le Showroom welcomed more than 500 buyers and experts from the fashion, textile and apparel industries to Atelier Richelieu in early February who was, looking to identify the trends for spring and summer 2022. The industry got together in a refined and safe setting offered by the showroom to discover over 2,500 selected samples from 75 international manufacturers from some ten countries. To ensure that visitor numbers could be controlled, advance reservations for specific admission slots were required.

Visitors to the showroom enjoyed direct contact with manufacturers – submitting a total of 3,235 enquiries and requests for information, offers and orders.

 

Venues an Important Infrastructure Asset in the National Economic Recovery of the Country – Business Events Council Malaysia

By | 2021

Business Events Council Malaysia chairman Alan Pryor, has urged the Malaysian government to continue active engagement with the business events industry to revive the Business Events sector in the economic recovery of the country.

“As the collective voice of the Malaysia BE industry, we are actively reaching out to the government, to maintain a more consistent communication channel, to discuss how venues and the industry can help the government rehabilitate the country’s economy. 2020 was a tragic year, for the industry and it continues to be so as the industry is unable to operate in line with government restrictions. Finally with vaccines coming within reach, giving way to herd immunity, potentially allowing us to put the uncertainties behind us, the pent up demand for meetings, conferences and business events will supersede the supply,” said the chairman.

Pryor further elaborated, in a 2018 report by the Malaysia Convention and Exhibitions Bureau, the Business Events industry was expected to contribute RM3.9 billion in the incremental of Gross National Income (GNI), thus providing about 16,700 jobs, by 2020.

According to a press release by the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, in 2019 alone, the purpose-built venue conducted over 1,500 meetings and events welcoming over one million delegates and visitors generating, an estimated economic impact of almost RM 1 billion.

Meetings and events were allowed to operate in the country for a few short months in 2020 which saw, the development of a comprehensive new norm standard operating procedures which was, successful executed at events through strict enforcement of the health and safety guidelines with venues investing in innovation and creation to expand their product and service range to diversify business revenue. This stated in the press release, is before the nation retreated into yet another strict lockdown restricting inter-state travel and banning meetings and gatherings right into 2021 which, dampened all efforts, pushing the industry supply chain, into further dire conditions with a constant struggle for survival.

The venue sector in Malaysia provides employment by the thousands as a primary player in the supply chain. Closures of venues have impacted heavily on the rest of the supply chain, from hotels, destination management companies and tour operators to stand builders, contractors, retail, local produce suppliers and part-time employment. This has had a major ramification on the overall revenue contribution to the national economy of the country generated through the business events supply chain.

 

Resort Provides Land to Feed Rescued Elephants in Koh Samui

By | 2021

The elephant sanctuary, Samui Elephant Haven is struggling to feed its herd of 21 elephants in the wake of the dramatic downturn in tourist numbers to the island due the pandemic.

As a result of which, Samui Elephant Haven is spending funds previously allocated for land rental to feed its herd, prompting fears it will be unable to continue leasing the land and be forced to displace the elephants.

A land was provided by Meliá resort which opened in Koh Samui early January this year for a community farm, to help feed the elephants rescued from exploitation activities. The farm is located some 200 metres from the resort on the north-eastern tip of Koh Samui island and can support 200 banana trees and other elephant fodder such as Napier and sweet grass.

“These magnificent animals need to eat 10 percent of their body weight in food daily, which is up to 400 kiligramme per elephant,” said the resort’s general manager, Ernesto Osuna.

He added with the sanctuary trying to survive on only five percent of the funding necessary, its herd has been getting only a fraction of its normal food intake.

In the meantime, to educate guests about the plight of the rescued elephants and encourage them to visit and support the sanctuary, Meliá Koh Samui has unveiled an elephant mascot Coco, to provide information about the Haven, as well as a host for educational activities about the elephants at the resort’s kids club Kidsdom.

The sanctuary which opened in 2018 is a safe harbour for elephants that had been put to work on tourist treks, who has been as show animals and in the logging industry. At the Haven, they are free to roam the 10-hectare sanctuary, to play, forage for native plants and bathe in various pools.

To contact Samui Elephant Haven and make a donation, please visit samuielephanthaven.org, call +66 95 628 6160 or email info@samuielephanthaven.org

Images are by Samui Elephant Haven.

Melbourne Convention Bureau Expands Digital Presence in China

By | 2021

MCB has launched new in-language content in its website, specifically translated for Chinese MICE professionals.  Through the website together with China’s video hosting service YouKu and WeChat, MCB aims to engage with its Chinese clients.

“Whilst they may not be able to travel now, the appeal of Melbourne and Australia to the Chinese planners remains high. These assets, in conjunction with our in-market team and our regular Event Planner webinars will enable the bureau to strengthen existing connections, create new and meaningful relationships, and future business opportunities,” said the bureau’s chief executive officer Julia Swanson.

Chinese speaking decision makers, influencers and planners can also communicate directly with MCB’s local team in Shanghai through WeChat.

China is the top visitor market for MICE groups to Victoria. Over the five years before the covid-19, MCB welcomed 23,000 delegates from Chinese MICE groups to Melbourne –  injecting AUD100 million in economic contributions to the Victorian visitor economy.

The new in-language website and presence on WeChat and YouKu boast the content of the website from information about MCB and its services, local knowledge to support planning a business event in the destination, sample of incentive programmes, case-studies of successful programmes to the latest news on Melbourne’s incentive travel and business events.