Coronavirus Singapore

No clusters linked to Mice events in recent months

Preventive steps taken by Singapore have allowed events to be held safely, says STB

There have been no Covid-19 clusters linked to meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions (Mice) events here in the last few months, a sign that the preventative steps taken by the country have allowed events to be held safely.

This instils confidence that measures against the pandemic set up for the Mice sector can be eased gradually in future, said the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) yesterday.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of the first day of Industrial Transformation Asia-Pacific (Itap) 2021 at the Singapore Expo, Mr Poh Chi Chuan, STB's executive director of exhibitions and conferences, said that Covid-19 incident rates have been very low at recent events.

These include last month's Gamescom Asia and the Joint Leadership Summit, as well as last week's Bloomberg New Economy Forum and the Milken Institute Asia Summit 2021.

The Milken summit, Bloomberg forum and Itap are among the Mice shows under a pilot scheme announced on Nov 15 to ease capacity limits and zoning requirements for specific events. All participants must be fully vaccinated and take a Covid-19 test before being allowed in.

At Itap, with daily pre-event Covid-19 tests a must for vaccinated attendees, there are no requirements for participants to keep to specific zones.

Mr Poh said the Government is experimenting with different protocols so that some safe management measures can be eased "and to make Mice shows like this (Itap) an effective place where people can network in a safe and productive manner".

Besides networking opportunities, attendees can view exhibitions of the technology that is changing industries. The success of an in-person exhibition like this could pave the way for bigger shows to be held next year, said Mr Poh.

He said that Itap 2021, with 5,000 people expected to attend in person over the three days and up to 1,000 people in the event area at any one time, is slated to be the biggest Mice event here since the Covid-19 pandemic started.

Other large Mice events include last week's three-day Restaurant Asia 2021, which was expected to draw 1,000 people a day.

Upcoming big events include February's Singapore Airshow.

Several more events have signed on in the last few months to be held in Singapore, such as Furniture, INteriors and Design next September.

"This goes to show that the demand for Mice industry events is very high and we are looking at a robust pipeline," said Mr Poh.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 23, 2021, with the headline 'No clusters linked to Mice events in recent months'. Subscribe