There are lots of ways in which politics can impact upon the events industry, however, I am only going to highlight 3 key issues that can currently be seen influencing the industry.
There is still a lot of uncertainty as to how Brexit will impact the UK’s trading system. The current system allows companies based here in the UK to sell their goods freely to customers anywhere within the EU without those customers having to pay additional taxes to import those goods. The same applies for British consumers and companies, as they can import goods from elsewhere within the EU without tariffs. Now with the introduction of Brexit, it is unclear as to whether this will still be the case. Changes to this could have a huge knock-on effect on the events industry in regards to importing equipment required for events. This could especially impact the UK music event industry as artists may be heavily taxed on importing equipment, which may discourage them from coming to the UK to perform.
Travel is a huge part of the events industry as it allows companies access to larger business opportunities. There are many different reasons why people in events may need to travel, this could be to view a local venue to arrange set-up for an event or to attend a conference half way across the world. However, we are not the only ones that travel, people worldwide come to the UK for business. Therefore, any restrictions that may infringe upon travel could have a colossal impact on business within the events industry. Travel related issues that currently have the potential to impact business for the UK events industry are restrictions on travel outside of the UK and controlled access into the UK for EU citizens.
Whether a location is safe to hold an event or not, can determine business within that area. Terror attacks can increase business expenses due to economic damage and/or lack of tourism. It is noticeable that such attacks have devastating effects on economies and tourism which can be seen from previous attacks. The Paris bombings in 2015 lost the country £644m in tourism. Before the attack, Paris was ranked the 3rd most popular destination for meetings and events, however since then it has fallen to 5th. It is likely that such a catastrophic event like the bombings affected this position and potentially the number of meetings and events that were held there after the attacks. More recently, the nerve agent attack saw tourism in Salisbury fall by 40%, demonstrating how a small, but fatal, attack can impact a popular tourist destination so drastically. These statistics show that if a location is not deemed safe to host an event, business in such sectors is likely to fall, therefore having a devastating effect on the targeted countries’ economy.
Written by: Paige Cradduck - Events Assistant for Grapevine Event Management