COVID compliance and mitigation: Africa Energy Week 2021 in Cape Town implements measures to ensure the health and safety of all participants

As Africa’s immunization campaign progresses rapidly, and as COVID-19 regulations are gradually starting to soften, South Africa is ready to welcome regional and international delegates to the highly anticipated African Energy Week (AEW) 2021, which takes place in Cape Town on the 9e-12e November. The event paves the way for new forms of large-scale tailored events by implementing groundbreaking measures that not only ensure the safety of delegates, but in fact allow increased public participation. In light of this, AEW 2021 placed COVID-19 and participant safety as a key objective, and through strategic design, strict and consistent monitoring of events, and partnerships with global health organizations, the event will be transformative for Africa.

Abide by COVID-19 regulations, AEW 2021 adopted a hybrid format in an effort to boost attendance while respecting social distancing and meeting restrictions. The event will use both in-person and online options, allowing for increased international participation while reducing gatherings. Before delegates arrive at the conference, they will be asked to pre-register online, reducing the risk of overcrowding. Upon arrival, through the use of the Global Health Passport – a AEW Partner 2021 – delegates will be oriented towards COVID test attempt in which strict social distancing and mask-wearing protocols will be in place. Subsequently, after receiving a negative test, delegates can walk to the conference location of their choice.

What is unique AEW 2021 is that delegates will not only be able to use online forums to attend events, but will also be able to see whether or not the venues are full using the event microsite. The AEW The 2021 microsite will alleviate social distancing issues, while allowing for more choice when it comes to functions. Therefore, AEW 2021 focuses on implementing the right protocols to ensure a safe and socially distanced event. The AEW The 2021 microsite will provide a detailed map of the sites and the V&A district, with delegates able to walk around the AEW Footbridge – starting from the One & Only hotel, passing through the avenue, exhibition marquees and workshop locations and ending at Zeitz MOCAA. In addition to other modes of transport such as the Red City Bus and Water Taxi, the AEW Walkway directly connects the conference venues while ensuring ease of movement for delegates.

Representing Africa’s premier energy event, AEW 2021 should welcome between 400 and 600 VIP delegates in November – including ministers from Nigeria, Ghana, Niger, Somalia, Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan, Angola, Senegal, Equatorial Guinea, Republic of Congo, South Africa, Kenya, Uganda and Namibia, as well as the OPEC, GECF and APPO General Secretaries. Taking care of everything COVID-19 rules of social distancing and site capacity are respected, AEW 2021 introduced the concept of an African energy village, thus enabling substantial public participation while complying with the COVID-19 site size regulations and protocols. Besides, AEW 2021 will provide meeting venues that will be used for VIP meetings, signing of agreements and engagement with key stakeholders. By distributing delegates over several sites and offering a myriad of functions within a single conference, AEW 2021 placed COVID-19 attenuation at the center of the event.

AEW 2021 will require all delegates to wear a face mask (KN95 or equivalent) to be worn on the mouth and nose, both indoors and outdoors and at all times. The event will provide disinfection facilities that will be available at each point of the event, with COVID regulations announced and social distancing applied at all times. To enforce these regulations, AEW 2021 appointed COVID commissioners, responsible for ensuring that all protocols are followed by all delegates. These commissioners will be placed throughout the V&A district and will strictly monitor the event. We partnered with Health Passport Worldwide for the rapid testing of all delegates each day of the event and arranged for the disinfection of all sites, equipment and public areas between each use and at the end and start of each day ” said Katie Briant, director of operations and events for AEW 2021.

Meanwhile, South Africa’s immunization program has progressed faster than originally planned, with the government moving to the next vaccination age group more than a week earlier than originally planned. The Western Cape has specifically pushed for a strong mass vaccination process, driven by the region’s appeal as a tourist destination and the desire to reopen the economy to international travelers. AEW 2021 applauds the Western Cape government for its effort and speed, and will offer a discount to vaccinated delegates, therefore working hand-in-hand with local authorities to ensure safety. In addition, with the gradual opening of the country to international tourists with the resumption of flights from global airlines such as Ethiopian Airlines and Emirates, large-scale events have chosen to take place in South Africa in 2021. In addition to AEW 2021 in Cape Town, Durban is expected to host the Intra-African Trade Fair in November, reaffirming the value and capacity of African destinations.

“Events such as AEW 2021 is important for attracting tourists, stimulating investment and supporting economic recovery in the Western Cape. Using a hybrid cross-platform approach and implementing COVID-19 measurements across the site of the event, AEW 2021 and its organizers are paving the way for business conferences and showing that we are ready to welcome business travelers to Cape Town and the Western Cape, ”said David Maynier, Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities of the Western Cape.

AEW 2021 and the African Energy Chamber are committed to ensuring the safety of our delegates. we do not take COVID-19 lightly and go above and beyond to ensure all regulations are followed and all participants are safe and healthy throughout the event. We work closely with the government and adapt the function accordingly. We have introduced pre-registration options for delegates, provided daily testing, and limited the capacity of each site. Despite AEW 2021 including a large-scale event, the separation and limited capacity of the venues ensure that each function is COVID-19 compliant, ”Briant continued.

Distributed by APO Group on behalf of the African Chamber of Energy.

For more information on health and safety and the various measures taken to ensure COVID-19 regulations are respected, visit https: // / covid-guidelines /. For more information on AEW visit 2021 or and / or email Amina Williams at [email protected]

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