The Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia (EEAA), calls for the Commonwealth Government to extend the money available under the Business Events Grants Program to the industry immediately.

As an active member of the peak body for the events sector, the Business Events Council of Australia (BECA), EEAA supports BECA’s pre-budget submission which calls for targeted support to add the rebuild of the Business Events industry.

Claudia Sagripanti, EEAA Chief Executive said EEAA’s members need the AUSTRADE Business Events Grants Program to urgently re-open for new applications.

“In September 2020, AUSTRADE opened applications for exhibitors and potential exhibitors, with $50M available for assistance. The EEAA is aware of many exhibitors across a range of exhibition types and locations applying for and being approved and welcomed the speed with which AUSTRADE acted to process applications,” she said.

The fund was closed temporarily at the end of March. While the closure was announced as temporary, it isn’t clear whether there are funds left over from the original $50M available to assist the industry.

“If there is money left after currently approved applications, EEAA calls for applications to urgently re-open to distribute any remaining money.

The Events sector was one of the first to be impacted by the Federal Government’s changes to mass gathering rules in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and is one of the last to be reactivated. Many businesses, which are privately owned SMEs, lost over 90% of their income, and have had no alternative ways of generating revenue due to these restrictions,” said Ms Sagripanti.

Research conducted by the Business Events Council of Australia1 (BECA) shows the catastrophic impact of the pandemic and related closures on events: 96% of events in 2021 were either cancelled or postponed to 2021 and beyond.

Follow up research by BECA in late October 2020, showed the pandemic’s effects continued, with 62% of event owners and planners cancelling or postponing events in Q1 2021. For the period January – June 2021, 57% said they had cancelled or postponed events.

Pre-COVID-19, the Business Events sector was valued at:

  • 229,000 jobs in FY19 compare to 179,000 in FY142
  • $35.7 billion in direct industry contribution in FY19 (up from $28.0 billion in FY2014)
  • 7 million people attended business events in Australia in FY19
  • The number of business events in Australia increased from 412,000 (FY14) 484,000 (FY19)

Ms Sagripanti said: “Through the Business Events Council of Australia (BECA) we worked with organisations across the sector to get the fairest possible structure for distribution of the fund, and one which would have had the biggest impact supporting employment across our sector.

“While the fund was not structured as the industry would have chosen, EEAA warmly welcomed the speed with which the fund was established.

Exhibitions and events have restarted, but at a much lower level than pre-COVID. Giving the industry modest government assistance is the confidence boost needed to exhibit and get employment back to normal,” concluded Ms Sagripanti.

The Exhibition & Event Association of Australasia (EEAA) is the only industry association for organisers, association organisers, venues and suppliers in the business of trade and consumer expos, and business conferences. The work of our Association and our Members is a testament to the Power of Exhibitions as a driver of the economy and in particular economic development, trade and export, employment, visitation and knowledge sharing. Formed in 1992, the EEAA works to ensure industry growth by encouraging high industry standards, promoting the professionalism of EEAA members and highlighting the unique business opportunities that exist through exhibitions, conferences and their associated events.

1 1 BECA Government Support & Future Confidence Report, February 2021

2 EY high level update based on basic economic and industry growth data (ABS and Tourism Research Australia Visitor Surveys).

Exhibition & Event Association of Australasia | | ABN 35 433 559 243

PO Box 952 Chatswood NSW 2057 | T: 02 9413 9520 | E:                                                                           2

The EEAA is also a member of the Business Events Council of Australia (BECA), which is an alliance of the key industry associations operating in the Australia business events sector. As the peak representative for the business events sector, BECA provides a single voice liaising with the federal government and relevant agencies on matters common to all sectors of the industry.

Read more about EEAA (

Exhibitions are a significant contributor to the Business Events sector and are by far the largest event type on a per-event basis, in terms of average direct expenditure and attendances per event. They are generally business, scientific and professional in nature and therefore should be seen in the context of trade, economic development, social and investment policies:

  • Exhibitions are multi-sector enablers by bringing buyers and sellers together and provide efficient means of supporting the recovery and advancement of a wide range of economic, professional, academic and business sectors.
  • Exhibitions provide a ROI for state government, as they also efficiently utilise existing government investments such as event facilities, infrastructure and transport.


For more information contact

Claudia Sagripanti, EEAA Chief Executive: 02 9413 9520 or 0414 520 836

BECA Value of Business Events to Australia, March 2020
Exhibition & Event Association of Australasia | | ABN 35 433 559 243

PO Box 952 Chatswood NSW 2057 | T: 02 9413 9520 | E:

By | 2021-05-05T11:04:36+00:00 May 5th, 2021|Americas, Asia – Pacific, Europe, Middle East – Africa|0 Comments

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