After a year of significant setbacks within the exhibitions and events industry globally , the sector has rallied and stands ready to re-open safely at increased capacities . Early responders , the Event Safety Council , produced and released a set of back-to-work Re-opening Guidelines to formally set the parameters for safety at events during the pandemic and beyond .
Business events and exhibitions are part of a notably well-organised industry sector whose organisers and venues are more than capable of putting together a public event that falls within the World Health Organisation and local Government COVID-19 regulations . An organised initiative by AAXO ( Association of African Exhibition Organisers ) members , Specialised Exhibitions - a division of Montgomery Group and the Johannesburg Expo Centre , set out to prove just that with the Restart Expo . This exhibition was a unique proof-of-concept event that demonstrated to the authorities that exhibitions and events CAN take place safely in South Africa with all the required COVID-19 health and safety protocols in place .
The Restart Expo , a small scale exhibition , hosted Government , industry , media , PCO ’ s , exhibitors , and visitors while showcasing the measures that make Exhibitions a safe platform for bringing buyers and sellers together to conduct business . Forty industry-related exhibitors engaged with government officials , nongovernmental organisations , industry associations , business representatives , media and industry colleagues on the exhibition floor , while in the business lounge , meeting rooms and restaurants , a high-powered seminar programme saw business owners , health officials , and authorities exchange ideas on how to utilise exhibition to drive the SA economy . All sessions were live-streamed