The National Business Event Program will be administered by the Melbourne Convention Bureau (MCB), with eligible events including conferences, exhibitions, workshops and seminars.
The grants can be used to fund venue hire, accommodation, transport and other event costs to spread the benefits across Victoria’s business events supply chain, with 50 per cent payable before the event commences to minimise any financial risk.
“We want to bring more business events to Victoria to boost our highly competitive global business events sector as the state continues on its path of economic recovery,” said Victoria acting Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Mary-Anne Thomas.
“Business events lead to an increase in accommodation bookings and spending in hospitality venues, supporting jobs across the economy.”
Last year, the federal government allocated $50 million to the business events sector as part of efforts to boost the struggling tourism and hospitality industry.
Australian businesses exhibiting at an approved business meeting, convention, conference and incentives event in 2021 will be able to apply for upfront grants to cover up to 50 per cent of their costs, ranging between $10,000 and $250,000.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Australia’s $36 billion business events sector had virtually ground to a halt during the COVID-19 crisis.
“Getting business events up and running again will be a critical part of the recovery of our tourism industry, but will also have huge flow-on effects through the entire economy,” Mr Morrison said.