Jane Longhurst, chief executive of the mia, said: “We understand the necessity for the government to delay the move to Step 4 – the final stage of its roadmap – that would have seen the last of England’s restrictions lifted and the legal limits on social contact removed.
“Our view is that it is better to delay for four weeks rather than have an unsettling re-trenching further down the line – as has happened with the travel corridors that has seen countries such as Portugal being moved to the amber travel list with very little warning.
“With venues investing an average £41,113 in enhanced hygiene and infection control measures and securing accreditations such as AIM Secure to ensure their properties are safe, we know from the early results of the pilots that business meetings and events can operate safely, but we want to open and remain open without capacity restrictions when it is safe to do so.
“The ongoing issue being faced by our industry is confidence to book and commit to contracting events. We fully appreciate that any delay continues to fuel that uncertainty and is potentially going to damage confidence even further.
“The mia remains committed to its lobbying work and ongoing direct liaison with government to seek recognition and support in addressing the unique challenges faced by the business meetings and events sector.”