Singapore is allowing exhibitions and conferences of up to 250 participants to resume. Beginning 1 October, organisers can apply to pilot such Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions (MICE) events. STB and the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) will review all MICE event proposals, and event organisers may proceed only upon obtaining MTI’s approval. Pilot events taking place under this arrangement include the Singapore International Energy Week in October.
Organisers who apply to pilot events with up to 250 attendees must demonstrate their ability to implement Safe Management Measures to meet a set of health and safety outcomes. The decision to accept applications to pilot MICE events of up to 250 attendees comes on the back of STB’s Safe Business Events Framework for business events of up to 50 attendees, which was first announced in July 2020. STB operationalised the framework with two pilots – the first concluded successfully in August 2020, while plans for the second pilot, which will take place in late September 2020, are underway.
Quoting Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing, The Straits Times said that the trialling of events with up to 250 individuals aims to pave the way for hosting events at a larger scale.
This move to start accepting applications to pilot events of up to 250 attendees also takes into account the importance of the MICE industry as well as the strong industry interest in and demand for business events. According to a MICE Economic Impact Assessment commissioned by STB in 2019, the industry supported more than 34,000 jobs with an economic value-add of SG$3.8 billion, or nearly one percent of Singapore’s GDP. Business travellers also spend almost double that of leisure travellers, making them high-yield visitors.
Keith Tan, STB's chief executive said the MICE sector is a strategic one for the Singapore economy, and its safe and gradual resumption will safeguard jobs and core capabilities.
"It will also help those in related sectors such as hospitality and aviation. Public health and safety remain our utmost priority, and we have worked closely with the industry to create strict protocols and develop new ways of organising events. These pilot events and solutions will help Singapore lead the way as a safe, trusted and innovative destination for MICE events," he added.