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Osaka Releases Guidelines for MICE Event Organizers for Infectious Disease Control

MICE Promotion Department at the Osaka Convention & Tourism Bureau (OCTB) announced the release of its “Guidelines for MICE Event Organizers for Infectious Disease Control”. 

For the past several decades, MICE events (such as business exhibitions and academic conferences) have enthusiastically organized around the world. The MICE industry has generated business opportunities and innovation, advanced research and development, and created significant economic effects through event attendees’ expenditures on transportation, food, and drinks, and accommodations. MICE events thus carry out a vital role as a driving force in economic development and regional activity.

However, because of the coronavirus pandemic, the MICE industry has seen universal cancellations and postponements, creating a significant impact on the economy. For example, small and medium-sized businesses in the manufacturing and other services and who present at exhibitions are facing enormous revenue loss. In addition, event organizations, hotels, caterers, and the tourism industry are grappling with critical operating conditions. Furthermore, although initiatives to move academic conferences online are gaining momentum, complete transition to online proves problematic and development in fields of research is similarly facing large setbacks.

Amid such circumstances, as the number of newly infected patients gradually settles at a low level, the Japanese government has lifted the state of emergency. The MICE Department at the Osaka Convention & Tourism Bureau said in the guidelines:

“In Osaka prefecture, Osaka city, and at the Osaka Convention & Tourism Bureau, we place strategic significance on the economic vitalization of the MICE industry and believe that it is imperative we establish an environment where MICE events can restart while mitigating infection risk. Additionally,
in order to also allow the economy ravaged by the coronavirus pandemic to recover, we believe business activities must be encouraged and MICE events with their large economic ripple effect must be restarted as soon as possible. Furthermore, because MICE events require extensive planning with their preparation and attracting attendees, many event organizers have expressed to us their strong desire for guidance, as soon as possible, on the best courses of action in their event planning.

We formulated these guidelines in the beginning of April and ha ve since taken into careful consideration government policies, the voices of MICE organizers, and examples in other industries, and have closely monitored the reopening of the MICE industry around the world, all to further examine these guidelines so that they will become standards that are as practical as possible for the domestic environment. Furthermore, we have striven to ensure that organizers will be able to understand the important points of these infectious disease control measures and be able to adapt on-site to any unpremeditated situations and devise creative solutions.

Consequently, we have released these guidelines under the supervision of infectious disease experts, but will continue to monitor the pandemic situation and make revisions based on expert opinions.

We hope that all event organizers will be able to take this time as an opportunity to advance the value of the MICE industry. We ask all organizers to utilize these guidelines to construct an event plan that ensures the peace of mind of event attendees.

It is our sincere wish that these guidelines will be used as an opportunity to spread awareness across Japan of how vital the MICE industry is, and that MICE events can once again be held in all regions and contribute to economic development.”

The guidelines include “Items to Implement Pre-Event” and “Items to Implement During the Event”. You can see them below

osaka MICE guidelines1

osaka MICE guidelines2

osaka MICE guidelines3

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