NSW Government response to Omicron endorsed by business events industry

06 Dec 2021

Sydney’s business events industry congratulates the NSW Government on its measured response to the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

Members of the Sydney Business Events Coalition encourage all Australian states to follow the World Health Organisation advice and not overreact to the arrival of the new strain in the hope that national events can now start to recover.

Coalition spokesperson and CEO of ICC Sydney, Geoff Donaghy said that while local event attendance remained strong this week, the reopening of interstate borders were needed to see the return of national events.

“While we remain cautious and committed to operating safe events, an over-reaction to Omicron could continue to devastate the events industry,” Donaghy said.

“After being decimated by the pandemic, events have only just recommenced. For business events, we are in the final weeks of business before the Christmas break and for entertainment events, we’re building up to a busy summer.

“If all states, like New South Wales, continue to support a safe reopening of venues alongside the removal of operating restrictions, we believe our road to recovery will be unaffected and we hope to see real economic growth in the New Year.

“While local attendance has returned at speed, we need national business to pick up in 2022 and, ultimately international event attendance, for any sort of meaningful recovery,” he said.

The members of the Coalition maintain a watching brief on vaccine mandates for venue attendance locally and globally and will continue their advocacy on this point in light of future emerging risks or dampening demand from organisers or attendees.

Together with the Committee for Sydney and Business Sydney, the Sydney Business Events Coalition comprises Sydney based members of the key association bodies and organisations representing business events:

  • Geoff Donaghy, CEO, ICC Sydney
  • Ehssan Veiszadeh, Deputy CEO & Director of Strategy, Committee for Sydney
  • Paul Nicolaou, Executive Director, Business Sydney
  • Peter McDonald, CEO, Meetings and Events Association
  • Nicole Walker, President, Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia
  • Domenic Genua, Acting Chief Executive, Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia
  • Karen Sainsbury, Managing Director, Cornerstone Events for Professional Conference Organisers of Australia
  • Michael Johnson, CEO, Tourism Accommodation Australia
  • Bassel Tallal, Accommodation Association.