Response to the Government’s Plan to Contain COVID-19: Sunday, 15 March 2020
We are an industry that connects people. Their health and safety are our top priority.
Having said this, we will always treat the health and safety of business event delegates as our number one priority and will follow official health and travel advice and the advice of governmental bodies.
In terms of the statement by the President of South Africa in which several restrictions have been announced, SAACI, as representative association for the business events industry, acknowledges the plan that has been unveiled. We will work with government departments and agencies to ensure that the economic and human resource impact on our industry is managed and fully understood.
We will keep members informed and updated on the work the association is undertaking as we work through this crisis and on how we will respond, in particular requesting members to participate in our snap survey on the impact of COVID-19 on the industry.
On Friday, 13 March 2020 SAACI requested the Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA) to convene an industry meeting to discuss and respond to the impact that COVID-19 is having on our industry and consider the following:
- A rescues package for affected business.
- A recovery plan post COVID-19 and
- The impact on domestic travel.
We await feedback from the TBCSA on a date for the proposed meeting.
In doing the above, we want to highlight the systemic importance of our marketplace and meeting places around the Southern Africa and the world. Once the current outbreak is over, they will be the drivers of economic recovery.
It is important that we participate in the public and political debate. We are closely monitoring the situation and are in regular contact with our partners around the world.
It is vital that we show, wherever in the world, that we are ready to open and to hold meetings in accordance with local health regulations, supporting industries and economies.
It matters a great deal that we discuss how to get them going again, when health authorities give the “all clear”. To keep events closed right now is keeping people safe from a health threat today. To get events going again is keeping people safe mid-to-long term by stabilising and supporting trade and economies.
And, together, we can do just that.
From the SAACI Team