Federal Government commits $2 million to measure true value of business events

The Albanese Labor Government has committed to working with industry to better measure its contribution to Australia’s visitor economy.

The Federal Government has today, on Global Meetings Industry Day 2023, announced it will allocate $2 million to measure business events data.

It will do this in international and national data sets, including bespoke data collection activities, with the project being rolled out in two phases.

The first phase has added a new range of questions to Tourism Research Australia’s National and International Visitor Surveys, which have been in place and collecting data since January. The second phase will see the Federal Government working closely with the Business Events Council of Australia (BECA) to roll out bespoke data collection points including venues, organisers, delegates and exhibitors across the country.

Minister Don Farrell.

Minister for Trade and Tourism, Don Farrell said the Government acknowledges the value of Australia’s business events sector, which contributes around $36 billion annually to the country’s economy.

“Business events are vital drivers of Australia’s visitor economy and the broader economy – they encourage high-yield travel, build networks, support the development of commercial concepts, and expand business opportunities,” Minister Farrell said.

In a typical year, 45 million people collectively attend around 500,000 business events in Australia.

Business events facilitate the exchange of ideas, concepts, systems and products, and create new networks and opportunities, as well as welcome high-yield travellers that play a significant contribution in boosting Australia’s visitor economy and supporting hundreds of thousands of jobs.

New business events sector data and measurements will support decision-making about the events to target for Australia. It will also help the broader visitor economy understand how it can best benefit from business event travellers and increase the chance that international business event visitors will return to Australia in the future.

“The new business events data project is a critical part of the Government’s support for the ongoing recovery of Australia’s business events sector,” Minister Farrell said.

“Better data means better decisions, better decisions mean better events, and better events mean a bigger boost for Australia’s visitor economy.”

Dr. Leo Jago.

BECA chair, Dr Leo Jago OAM, applauded the Government’s decision which he said addressed one of the industry’s top priorities in post-pandemic recovery and growth towards 2030.

“The $2 million allocation is the single largest investment in business events research that we have seen and will establish a long-term framework to most accurately and consistently measure the business events industry’s contribution to the economy over the next decade,” Dr Jago said.

“It also supports our ability to measure our performance as an industry and track our progress against THRIVE 2030 targets.

“The partnership between Tourism Research Australia and the industry in this project will ensure that the correct data are being collected in a manner credible to all levels of government.

“To ensure the success of the project to estimate the economic value of business events, it is essential that industry participates and provides the necessary data in a timely fashion.”

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