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Photo Credit: Paaspop

The Dutch government has revealed details of its event cancellation fund, announced in January, which will allow event organisers to plan for the second half of 2021 without the financial risk posed by a potential Covid outbreak.

On Friday (19 March), the government confirmed it is reserving €385 million for the guarantee fund, which will cover events that are scheduled between 1 July 2021 and 31 December 2021.

Events that were, or are, planned before 1 July 2021 and that have, or will, be moved to a date between 1 July and 31 December 2021 are also covered by the scheme. An organiser can claim under the scheme if the event is banned by the Dutch government due to Coronavirus and the organiser cancels the event as a result.

In that case, the organiser will receive a maximum of 100% of the costs already incurred. Of this amount, 80% is a donation and the remainder is a loan to be repaid to the government.

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Photo Credit: Back To Live

Events must be organised in accordance with the Coronavirus restrictions applicable at the time of the event in order to be eligible for the scheme.

The scheme will not apply to new events which are to be held for the first time, events that have not taken out cancellation insurance for the previous two editions, free events and events outside of the Netherlands.

“It is a very important signal from the government to society that our sector can start organising events after 1 July with the original capacity,” says Jolanda Jansen from Alliance of Event Builders (Alliantie van Evenementenbouwers), an umbrella group whose members include promoters’ association VVEM and festival/venues body VNPF.

“This expresses confidence, although it remains a damper for the events that should take place earlier and cannot be moved, and are therefore now left out. Now that the guarantee scheme is in place, we would like to ask the government once again to take into account the National Event Plan in their roadmap as the starting point for our sector. People need perspective and want to know what to expect this summer.”

“We are going to study the scheme thoroughly for feasibility and we will enter into discussions with the organisers to find out for which summer events it is feasible to start preparations now. But we are of course enthusiastic that there is finally a scheme to fall back on and that the government is expressing confidence in the event summer 2021.”

Events scheduled between July and the end of the year, that can demonstrate they were insured against cancellation for previous editions, can register their event from 1 May and will then be informed within four weeks whether they are eligible for the scheme.

Since January, when the government announced preliminary dates for the fund, major festivals including Paaspop, DGTL, Dauwpop, Awakenings, Utrecht Central Park Festival and Zwarte Cross have pushed back their spring editions until the autumn in order to be covered by the scheme.