UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry, has published a structured framework for the reopening of exhibitions. It outlines how exhibitions can resume business, safely and responsibly, and argues for political support to ensure this can be done in a timely manner.

The introduction explains: “A blanket regulation for all mass gatherings will negatively impact economic recovery after the current pandemic. There are many types of mass gatherings and they all serve various purposes. The participants of exhibition and B2B trade events are focused on doing business, exchanging information, and sharing/transferring knowledge. B2B exhibitions can be managed and operated in a similar way to supermarkets and other retail outlets that have continued to function successfully and safely throughout the COVID-19 crisis.

“It is imperative that exhibitions are given the security of planning to re-open in a timely manner under controlled circumstances, as described in this document. This requires clear signals from politicians, as exhibitions have a lead time of several months.”

“It is imperative that exhibitions are given the security of planning to re-open in a timely manner under controlled circumstances, as described in this document. This requires clear signals from politicians, as exhibitions have a lead time of several months.

“The global exhibition industry will reconnect and rebuild businesses, industries and economies following this unprecedented period of industrial and economic stagnation.”

The report was made with the input and support of several exhibition organisers, venues and associations from around the world, and complies with the recommendations of the World Health Organisation (WHO) and relevant health authorities.

You can download the report for free here.

UFI encourages all players within the industry to share the report, and lobby politicians, policy makers and regulators to adopt the framework.

It has also undertaken to create a subsequent document which will include best practice examples from around the world of how exhibitions have successfully reopened.