As New Zealand leads the world out of lockdown and into reopening, most of neighbouring Australia’s states appear not so keen to open up their borders for travel before September.
State leaders, including those of South Australia, Western Australia, Queensland, Northern Territory and Tasmania, have said they would continue to lock down their borders in the short term, a decision which means that only domestic events are likely to run before September in these states.
“It is difficult and it’s something that we are struggling with,” said Claudia Sagripanti, CEO of Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia (EEAA).
A possible scenario could emerge whereby travellers from open border Australian states could travel to New Zealand under a trans-Tasman bubble arrangement before they could go to certain states in their own country.
ICC CEO Geoff Donaghy has highlighted the ‘journey of confidence and trust’ that needs to be made by organisers, delegates and exhibitors. He said that without confidence in venues and the transport systems, the situation would be governed by the weakest link of confidence and trust in the chain.
In Queensland, Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre (BCEC), despite being closed to the public, is celebrating 25 years of delivering major events.
Essential service staff still working at the centre did mark the occasion with a birthday cake.
In the 25 years of operation, BCEC has hosted 22,000 events and welcomed 18.5m visitors.
The centre is responsible for more than 70% of delegate days to Brisbane each year.
Photo: Courtesy of the South Bank Corporation