ICC Sydney approved to host 1,500 pax corporate events

The venue can go ahead with large conferences, however one major rule still applies.

International Convention Centre Sydney (ICC Sydney) has received an exemption to hold corporate events for up to 1,500 people, however they must still be separated into groups of 300.

The exemption, granted by the New South Wales (NSW) Department of Health, covers corporate events including conferences, meetings, AGMs, awards and banquets.

The increased 1,500 pax limit is subject to one person per four square metres and allocated to groups no larger than 300 people in ‘Separate Areas’ within ICC Sydney. In effect, a 1,500 pax event would have to be made up of five separate groups.

ICC Sydney CEO Geoff Donaghy said the exemption is a vital step in the venue’s COVID-19 recovery.

“We are pleased to receive an exemption from the NSW Department of Health, which is testament to ICC Sydney’s ability to safely resume running larger events,” he said.

“This exemption will significantly improve ICC Sydney’s ability to attract corporate events, which is essential for the wider recovery of Australia’s business event’s sector – worth over $36 billion annually to our economy.”

Event planning underway

The first event to go ahead under the new rule will be the 43rd COSPAR Scientific Assembly, from 28 January 2021.

The event will attract up to 1,500 local participants, while a virtual platform will stream to an estimated audience of 3,000 attendees.

Business Council of Australia CEO Vanessa Findlay welcomed the exemption, saying it is momentous news for the business events industry.

“ICC Sydney is a powerhouse of the national business events sector, which collectively contributes $36 billion to the national economy,” she said.

“The decision to allow gatherings of 1,500 people for corporate events at ICC Sydney, is testament to the confidence that the team has been able to build with its government partners.”

The conference and convention exemption follows the recent announcements allowing ICC Sydney to host public exhibitions of all sizes and to increase theatre events to 2,400 patrons.

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