Wednesday, 3 February 2021

Calling on our local event planners to continue working with Business Events Sarawak in developing hybrid events

I have encouraged our local business event planners to strengthen their collaborations with Business Events Sarawak (BESarawak) as our joint direction is to develop hybrid events. It is time for us to band together and develop business events as one entity by sending positive messages to strengthen the industry.


Through BESarawak, we have an internationally recognised marketing campaign known as “Tribe Legacy Sarawak” and it is welcoming industry players to further generate ideas and discussions on what can be done to mitigate and craft a worthwhile experience for business events.


Essentially we need to work together and restart the industry with safe in-person events and hybrid functions while creating new best practices and guidelines to serve as the norm in event planning. In 2020 alone, Sarawak secured an estimated total economic impact of RM293.27 million and an expected direct delegate expenditure of RM159.38 million from 80 secured events that are scheduled to take place from now until 2026, 


From these figures, RM17.59 million of the total tax revenue is expected to generate at least 23,276 job placements for Sarawakians in the years that the respective events are to be held.


While we continue to live in the new normal and at a time where uncertainties reign in our business and travel outlook, these figures have proven that Sarawak is still a destination of choice for business event planners.


We must take note that there is need to regulate the nature, format and size of an event for everyone’s safety and peace of mind hence the need to ‘meet differently’ because there are more and more events which were using virtual platforms last year.


Thus, I have the opinion that digital events are important to propel the industry forward whereby in the future, hybrid events which is a combination both of physical and virtual, with strict SOP (Standard Operating Procedures) are the way to go forward as it gives the best of both worlds.

There is the option for attendees from all over the world to have the choice of attending any events, functions and activities either physically or virtually.

Without a doubt, hosting events and meetings in a world affected by Covid-19 requires major changes and adjustments because there is a need to mitigate uncertainties among travellers and event participants with industry-friendly policies and guidelines.


Destination hosts, event planners, travel organisers need to assure the public and this can be done through friendly refund policies, customised travel insurance and more but the state government is always ready to help in giving information on the best practices and guidelines for venues and event planners. We must remember to instil confidence among attendees worldwide where it can be communicated directly on our state’s readiness and measures related to health, hygiene, and safety of all. 

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