In case you missed this on our social channels on Saturday, the Events Transition Support Payment scheme (ETSP), introduced in November 2021 to give event organisers financial certainty to host large scale events over summer, will be extended from 4 April 2022 to 31 January 2023.
Expanding the scheme will provide support and confidence to the events sector throughout 2022 in response to the current outbreak of the COVID-19 Omicron variant.
From 4 April, the following will be added to the scheme:
- Business events with at least 200 attendees Business events | Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment (mbie.govt.nz)
- Touring events with a combined total of over 5,000 attendees across all venues / dates
- A new payment trigger allowing events to cancel or postpone if the lead artist is required to self-isolate by the Ministry of Health.
Suppliers and the ETSP
Event organisers will be able to claim 90% of their unrecoverable costs, i.e:
- expenses that are directly associated with the event – e.g., without the event, they wouldn’t be a part of regular business expenses and
- expenses that event organisers (as the claimant) are obliged to pay to event suppliers, vendors, performers, artists, or other companies associated with putting on the event
MBIE have confirmed that prior work already undertaken by a supplier for the delivery of the event (e.g., meetings attended, planning strategies established, prior venue setup, etc.) may be claimed as an unrecoverable cost under the ETSP, even if not yet invoiced at the point of cancellation.
Please click here to view MBIE's presentation on the ETSP (noting the presentation was compiled prior to the extension of the ETSP beyond 3 April 2022).
Arts and Culture Event Support Scheme (ACESS)
The Arts and Culture Event Support Scheme has been boosted by $70.7 million – giving arts and cultural sector event organisers support to deliver planned events right through to the end of January 2023. Key eligibility criteria have also been extended and consideration is being given to how new events can be supported in the latter half of 2022. View the criteria for the Arts and Culture Event Support Scheme here.
Gaps in support
The extension to the ETSP to January 2023 and the inclusion of business events over 200PAX is indeed welcome news. We have advocated for the time extension since November 2021 when the scheme was discussed, knowing too well it was just a matter of time until Omicron reached our country.
That said, there are still gaps in support for events and event professionals affected by the red setting, yet not covered by the ETSP nor the ACESS funding.
Hence, we have been calling for:
- Acknowledgement of the gap in support for sporting events, food events and other events not eligible for the ETSP or ACESS schemes. We suggest a fund similar to ACESS to address all effected events.
- Immediate targeted financial relief such as wage subsidies and the Resurgence Support Payment (RSP) particularly to assist those not eligible for those schemes.
In fact, in our letter of last week to Minister Nash, we have called for the Prime Minister to appoint an Associate Minister to represent the wider events industry - a sector worth billions. Currently representation for our sector is spread across multiple portfolios and Ministers, being:
- Economic & Regional Development, Tourism and Small Business.
- Sport & Recreation,
- Arts, Culture & Heritage
This spread of representation means the different subsectors of our industry are not supported and recognised with the same consistency.
We will keep you posted once we hear back from Minister Nash on our letter.
In the meantime, please log your cancelled or postponed events
Please log your cancelled or postponed events with our centralised register here. This information will assist us as we keep advocating on behalf of our wider events sector.
Ségolène de Fontenay
General Manager, NZEA