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Global Exhibitions Day 2020 has become the single largest day of awareness and advocacy for the exhibition industry ever

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Global Exhibitions Day 2020 had participation from 114 countries and regions. The key message of GED2020 “exhibitions are key to rebuilding economies” continues as we re-open for business. Global Exhibitions Day 2021 will be 2 June.

PARIS – The 5th edition of Global Exhibitions Day (GED) 2020 spread the message “exhibitions are key to rebuilding economies” across the globe. From videos to meetings with policy makers, webinars to hybrid events, webcast to social campaigns, bingo, cakes, virtual running parties, and more, people and organisations from at least 114 countries/regions got involved in GED2020.

Governments around the world revisited polices towards exhibitions, while GED activities and messages were being spread across the world. Over the past few days, New Zealand decided to allow events of all sizes to take place again beginning the second week in June. Greece announced exhibitions can restart 1 July. Germany announced event logistic companies and companies connected to trade shows and events are eligible for funds from a 25bn. euros fund set up to assist with COVID-19 related revenue loss. As well, in the US state of Texas, it was declared that exhibitions and convention centres can reopen now at 50% of their usual occupancy.

Over the course of the GED campaign, UFI was able to track* 8,376 mentions, through unique posts and messages, that had a potential reach of 715m people. Thousands of people participated live in at least 21 webinars and hybrid events, and on 3 June, as well as in the lead-up, many more activities, celebrating the people and power of exhibitions, took place throughout the industry.

Mary Larkin, UFI President & President of Diversified Communications, said, “I am astounded with the participation in this year’s Global Exhibitions Day. Our unique industry took-up the challenge to make sure we were seen and heard by policy makers and by our customers. As exhibitions begin to restart across the world, we will reconnect and rebuild businesses. As an industry, we must take the momentum and awareness we’ve generated into the next phases of our advocacy work.”

Much like the exhibitions and events that the industry hosts, GED was a day for showcasing our industry, as well as having a bit of fun and sharing our stories. Some of the most prominent actions during GED2020 were the “voices of the exhibition industry” quote cards, the GED celebration videos, and the memorable moments in exhibitions added to the map on globalexhibitionsday.org. 

“This year’s GED put into the spotlight both the size and passion of our industry and the importance of exhibitions in economic recovery. It was also an opportunity to see the diversity and multicultural nature of exhibitions and our industry,” said Kai Hattendorf, CEO of UFI. “There are important movements going on now to fight racial injustice. Exhibitions, and those in the industry who run them, should reflect the best of our societies, diversity, equality, openness, and a curiosity of what’s beyond our own sphere. As an industry that brings people together, we condemn racism and we stand in solidarity with those who fight it.”

The work of spreading the key messages of GED2020 will continue throughout the year, and the next Global Exhibitions Day will be held on 2 June 2021.

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