MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Exhibitions) related businesses submitted a letter to Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha on Wednesday, requesting the government to further ease restrictions for the industry and allow their businesses to resume by next Friday, 15 October.
According to chairman of the Business of Creative and Event Management Association Upatham Nisitsukcharoen, domestic MICE revenue dropped 63.8% to 40.8 million baht from April to June this year, while income from domestic exhibitions was 26 million baht, down 74.7% year-on-year.
Mr Upatham, who led executives of the Thai Exhibition Association, Thailand Incentive and Convention Association and Thai Hotels Association to submit their request to the government, said the pandemic and tight state restrictions for the past 20 months have had a huge impact on the industry, leading many operators to lay off their workers or cease operations.
Mr Upatham said the Mice industry generated 500 billion baht in revenue in 2019 and employed 400,000 workers. Since it employs so many people it could boost the Thai economy and create jobs and income for related industries if it was given assistance.
Business travellers differ from the leisure market in that they must comply with company decisions and budgets, with business trips cut at any time if risk increases, he said.
He said the fourth quarter is typically the high season for the MICE industry and the easing of restrictions would give the segment an opportunity to stay afloat and retain employment.