Business Events Council of Australia (BECA) and Conventions & Incentives New Zealand (CINZ) have announced a joint agreement that will see both organizations collaborate on issues that mutually affect their markets.
“COVID-19 has impacted business events on both sides of the Tasman in an extraordinary way,” said Lisa Hopkins, CEO, CINZ, in an official release. “However, it has also created opportunity and conversation amongst organizations who would not normally align, and our agreement with BECA is an example of this.”
BECA Chair, Dr Vanessa Findlay sees the opportunity to support projects which impact both markets, lending a more powerful lever. “Business events are such significant economic drivers and a fast way of encouraging trade and investment. A collaboration between CINZ and BECA will facilitate maximum benefit for both our countries,” she said. “It is an important lever for business recovery that attendees from both countries can travel across the Tasman.”
Hopkins and Findlay also see the benefit in leveraging Government advocacy.
“The Australian Government publicly acknowledged the difference between controlled gatherings (e.g business events) and mass gatherings when they released their three-step COVIDSafe Roadmap, whereas the New Zealand government enabled events of up to 100 to go ahead five weeks ago,” said Hopkins. “We would have liked to have seen our government follow their Australian counterparts and I am sure, vice versa.”
Findlay agrees. “The close relationship of our countries, the reliance we have on each other, means it makes sense to have a common voice when advocating for change, especially at this time of tremendous economic impact on our industry,” she said.
With New Zealand now functioning under Alert Level 1, events are now able to operate without any restriction, both Hopkins and Findlay believe keeping an eye on the future is critical.
“When it comes to competitive bids, each Association will continue to act in the best interest of their markets,” said Hopkins. “However, this is a unique relationship at a unique time. Both Vanessa and I believe a unified voice from this part of the world makes sense, giving customers and our industry greater confidence that it’s safe to attend business events.”