bauma CONEXPO AFRICA – the trade show for construction, building material, mining, agriculture & forestry machinery and vehicles – has been cancelled for 2021.
Suzette Scheepers, CEO of event organisers Messe Muenchen South Africa, said the event, which had been scheduled to be held in Johannesburg from October 13 – 16, would not go ahead this year due to uncertainty in the market and ongoing travel restrictions to and from South Africa as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“As a key pan-African industry event, bauma CONEXPO AFRICA traditionally brings together thousands of pan-African and international stakeholders for knowledge sharing and product discovery. Due to the current circumstances, we concluded that we could not assure our valued sponsors, exhibitors and visitors of the usual levels of pan-African and international engagement this year,” she said.
Scheepers said the difficult decision had been made after in-depth consultations with partners and industry stakeholders. “The health and safety of all participants is a top priority for us. This priority, as well as our focus on delivering an optimal event experience to both exhibitors and visitors, would have been challenged by the current uncertain situation,” she said.
Concern from industry stakeholders
Messe Muenchen Germany and industry stakeholders expressed concern that South Africa is currently one of the most travel restricted areas in the world, with more than 120 major restrictions from other countries in place. In addition, many SADC countries had restrictions in place and most European countries were back under strict lockdown, making it challenging for travellers to leave their countries. Many companies still have internal travel restrictions for their employees until July 2021. International exhibitors required time to move equipment for display, compounding the current challenges.
“We thank our partners, exhibitors and the bauma CONEXPO AFRICA community for their ongoing understanding and support. We would like to assure all stakeholders of an enhanced and exceptional industry event when bauma CONEXPO AFRICA returns,” Scheepers said.
Importantly now, stakeholders agree that the industry needs to work towards economic recovery and revitalisation amid the current challenges it faces, so that we can all look forward to collaborating to make the next edition of bauma CONEXPO AFRICA a success.