Sector waits for formal guidance on second lockdown implications

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The Meetings Industry Association is still awaiting clear formal guidance on the implications of the second lockdown restrictions on the business meetings and events sector.

Jane Longhurst, chief executive of the Meetings Industry Association (mia)
Jane Longhurst, chief executive of the Meetings Industry Association (mia)

Jane Longhurst, chief executive of The Meetings Industry Association said: “Since Saturday evening’s announcement, we have been in continuous direct liaison with the Department of Culture Media & Sport (DCMS) trying to ascertain firm guidance on what the second national lockdown, which commences tomorrow, actually means for the business meetings and events sector.

“While we agree with the need to take measures to slow the spread of COVID-19, we are in complete despair that, yet again, the business meetings and events industry is left in limbo and without the clarity we really need, while the hospitality sector has already received clear measures for hotels, restaurants, bars and entertainment venues.

“At this stage, all we have is the legislation that was published yesterday, but it unfortunately does not provide any conclusive guidance for our sector.

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“We know this is unsatisfactory and that decisions need to be made now for business meetings and events still scheduled to take place this week, but all we can currently advise is that the sector must exercise caution and strongly recommend that venues and organisers don’t make hasty decisions based on rumour or conjecture.  As soon as we have clarification, we will share it with the sector.”