A sustainable shift

bic event

Many corporates are now looking at having more meaningful, socially responsible travel, which offers Singapore an opportunity to showcase its sustainable M!CE options.

Hazel Jain

The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is ready to offer the next level of M!CE travel options to corporates. It showcased this by participating in the M!CE Travel Show 2022, organised by DDP Exhibitions, which saw participation from 45 key corporate buyers. STB was also part of a panel discussion alongside the exhibition that focused on sustainable tourism. Sharing his views, GB Srithar, Regional Director, India, Middle East & South Asia, STB, said, “It was important for us to communicate that Singapore M!CE is open to Indian corporates. We interacted with many key corporates and they have been asking how they can have meaningful, socially responsible travel. This demand for a sustainable option is a positive signal for Singapore planning meetings and incentives.”

He cited a World Travel and Tourism Council report titled “Destination 2030: Global Cities’ Readiness for Sustainable Growth,” in which Singapore ranked third in three of the eight pillars of business, urban readiness, and safety and security. “We are very deliberate in our sustainable efforts. Singapore was previously a garden city, but now we are a city in a garden. So for us, it is important that we practice sustainable travel, and we are making a lot of effort in the M!CE space as well. A lot of the stakeholders, whether it is Marina Bay Sands, Resorts World Sentosa, or Gardens by the Bay, all of them have implemented sustainable practices, and that is set to grow,” Srithar added.

The timing of STB’s participation in this M!CE Travel Show was perfect. STB is happy to announce that it is back to the ‘near pre-COVID-19’ level and it no longer requires a pre-departure COVID-19 test for fully-vaccinated travellers. A lot of safety restrictions have also been lifted. For example, indoor group sizes have been lifted, and the limitation of 10 pax has been lifted. Even outdoor masks are no longer mandatory, and TraceTogether is not required anymore except at events with more than 500 pax.

Easy for big groups
Renjie Wong, Area Director, India and South Asia (Mumbai), STB, said, “Over the past two and a half years, tourism partners in Singapore have been busy re-inventing and re-imagining experiences for corporate travellers. From Marina Bay Sand’s hybrid event studio with hologram capabilities to new venues such as the Museum of Ice Cream, we have a lot of new, cutting-edge experiences to meet the needs of our M!CE visitors.”

He adds that Singapore offers a range of venues, from its top convention centres like the Marina Bay and the Raffles convention centres to unconventional spaces such as Gardens by the Bay, where you can book out the supertree grove that also has a sound and light show. “Or even the historic venues such as Clifford Pier, which have now been converted into a temporary fine-dining restaurant for events. Singapore is now fully re-opened and it is easy for big groups to enter Singapore and move around. We have a range of schemes to support corporate trips – whether it is free experiences or incentive grants. We want to reimagine what meetings can be in Singapore,” he adds.

GOOD TO KNOW Sentosa aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030 and become a globally-recognised, certified sustainable tourism destination. The multi-pronged roadmap includes electrification of all Sentosa transportation, leveraging under-utilised spaces for renewable energy, development of low-energy buildings, green events, and more.