The Professional Conference Organisers (PCO) Association Inc, on behalf of our members, would like to express our concern regarding reforms to self-education expense deductions, as recently announced by the Federal Government.
The PCO Association is a national not-for-profit member-based industry association representing conference, meetings and events managers. Our members collectively organise over 70% of the conference, meetings and business events convened throughout Australia per annum, with a spend by these business events customers worth in excess of $10b per annum (source: Tourism Research Australia 2011). The majority of these business events are hosted by not-for-profit organisations.
The industry is already feeling the impact of various State Government cut-backs on conference attendance, and to impose an additional dis-incentive for potential delegates to invest in their professional development by attending business events is a cause of major concern throughout the sector, in particular, the policy will:
- Adversely impact the sustainability of Australia’s not-for-profit sector, many only just recovering from the impact of the GFC
- Lead to a decline in the overall skill levels of Australian employees
- Adversely affect the young and those just starting in careers
- Adversely affect the competitiveness of Australian workers in the global marketplace
- Adversely affect the viability of PCO businesses throughout Australia
The PCO Association urges the Federal Government to reconsider this retrograde step and reconsider the implementation of this policy for the sake of the not-for-profit sector, the business events industry, and the Australian economy.