The UK Government has announced that from 1 October 2020 B2B exhibitions will once again be held in England. This much-anticipated news opens the doors for domestic and international business delegates from around the world to meet and share ideas, renew essential contacts and further innovation.
Oceanology International (Oi) 2020 is set to take place at ExCel London from 1-3 December 2020, which will make it one of the first major industry events to occur since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic led countries around the world into lockdown. Oi 2020 will benefit visitors from around the world with an unmissable and diverse range of ocean technology and innovation, on-water demonstrations and technical conference content, ideal to help re-establish ocean businesses in the context of the “new normal”.
The announcement follows a long period of intensive negotiations between the UK Government and the Association of Event Organisers (AEO) – of which Oi organisers Reed Exhibitions is a member – together with the Association of Event Venues (AEV) and the Event Supplier and Services Association (ESSA). Chris Skeith, AEO CEO, says, “We are pleased to see that – after months of constructive conversations with the government – a ‘go date’ has been issued for the exhibitions industry, which plays a critical role for the UK economy, generating GPB 11 billion in economic activity and supporting 114,000 jobs.”
“Organisers, venues and suppliers have worked tirelessly to create COVID-19 safe guidelines which create the framework for the safe re-opening of exhibitions in a COVID-secure way,” he continued. “These include, but are not limited to, the ability to track and trace our audiences and create bespoke events on a risk-assessed basis,” Skeith adds.
Oi and ExCeL London have been working with the AEV (Association of Event Venues) and other key stakeholders to develop the All Secure Standard, an industry-wide benchmark to enable the safe return of organised events. Although around 10% of the venue will remain as storage for the NHS Nightingale hospital set up at ExCel during the pandemic, the vast majority of the venue (90%) has been restored to its original state, allowing the venue to fully function within the security of the new guidelines.
Throughout the pandemic, the Oi Portfolio has delivered a wide variety of content to help keep the industry connected and informed via the Inside Oi Hub, which was launched in April creating an online resource filled with webinars, blogs and videos designed to assist all aspects of the industry.
To assist exhibitors and visitors in understanding and preparing for exhibitions under the new framework, Reed Exhibitions has developed a “new normal” guide, which is available here.
David Ince, Event Director, Oceanology International, says, “This is great news for the hundreds of companies we support and facilitate connections for, as well as the events industry. After some challenging times for all of us, having the opportunity to bring expertise together from all over the world in an innovative and collaborative business environment will be a great way to finish the year.”
“We look forward to welcoming everyone to London in December to resume first-hand experiences and conversation, and will work tirelessly to ensure that exhibitors, delegates and visitors are kept safe and secure through strict adherence to current government and medical advice,” continues Ince.
For more information, visit www.oceanologyinternational.com