This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Business Visits and Events Partnership, which brings together leading trade associations and government agencies to support a more competitive, high quality and more profitable events sector in Britain.Our members include the Event Industry Alliance, the National Outdoor Event Association, the Department for Transport and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.We meet in general session three times a year and have working groups for specialist issues such as legislation, skills and research.
The BVEP was created in 2000 to provide government with a cohesive and independent voice on matters and policies that impact exhibitions, conferences, outdoor events, incentive travel, corporate hospitality, cultural, sporting and leisure events.Our secretariat is provided by VisitBritain.Over the last 10 years, the events sector has grown to £22 billion in terms of its contribution to tourism and in excess of £100 billion in terms of trade transacted at exhibitions. It’s worth in revitalising the visitor economy and growing destinations through employment creation, regeneration and new investment, is starting to be recognised by local, regional and national government.
We work closely with VisitBritain, which has led to a purposeful relationship with its business visits and events department, and strong support for EventBritain. Good working relationships also exist with the business tourism agencies for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, which are members, and we are developing a similar relationship with VisitEngland, as it evolves its event sector policies and activities.
We have ongoing briefings with tourism and trade ministers, Government departments and agencies which include lobbying for fairer fiscal and taxation measures, better regulation and more support for bids for international events.We are also a member of the Tourism Alliance and take an active role with it on Government policy consultations.Over the years we have sponsored three conferences on business tourism and our publications include a comprehensive briefing on the value, volume, scope and characteristics of each event sector, outlining key issues and trends. We have also prepared papers on new industry initiatives, best practice, qualifications and careers, and we support focused research by our members.
As a result of our lobbying, exhibitions and events are included in the DCMS' strategy for the creative industries, which includes advertising, design and new media. The BVEP sat on the Conservative Party Tourism Taskforce, which recently called for more investment to bring events to the UK, and our lobbying also secured a place for a representative from the events industry on the Government's Tourism Advisory Council; currently held by the NEC's chief executive, Paul Thandi.
Looking ahead, we are forging close links with the leisure, cultural and sporting events sector. Many venues and organisers span business and leisure events and have common skills and concerns. It therefore makes sense to represent a broader events sector, especially given the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games from which events are likely to be the main beneficiary.
Some key areas our members will focus on over the next decade include raising the profile of live events, lobbying for greater funding; resources and bid support for event promotion; reducing the regulatory burden; more informed research on value, competitiveness and buyer motivation; and the establishment of an All Parliamentary Group for events.Britain's events represent an unequalled opportunity to show off our creative and organisational talent and generate business for Britain's industry.
If the trade and professional organisations for the event industry continue to work together over the next decade, the industry will benefit from being a significant driver of national, regional and local economic performance, of physical and social regeneration and of cultural and business development.The Business Visits and Events Partnership will ensure this opportunity will not be missed.”
The Partnership's website, www.businessvisitsandeventspartnership.com, contains news, research and publications and a diary of events.