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“To be in a meeting seeing people face to face, what an experience!”

Germany has adopted a more ‘can-do’ approach to business events than most countries and, in some states, national association meetings are taking place again – some with hundreds of delegates.

As early as May the national government made a distinction between exhibitions and conferences and ‘mass gatherings’, like festivals and rock concerts, and it is up to each state to set a limit on numbers.

And last week Germany deemed travel for trade shows and exhibitions ‘essential’, which  means anyone can enter the country to a business event, even those from high-risk areas.

Earlier this month the Congress Centre Leipzig played host to 600 doctors at the 62nd Annual Meeting of the German Society of Phlebology (GSP), a specialist discipline with vascular medicine. A further 200 delegates from 20 countries  – from Nepal to Peru – took part in the four-day event online via livestream.

Professor Dr Markus Stucker, GSP President, said the venue’s safety measures were no hindrance: “Just like we got used to wearing masks in the supermarket, it’s no problem to stick to the rules of hygiene during this congress.”

Dr Stephan Travers, managing owner of pharma and chemical company Kreussler & Co, said: “It’s really special to attend a congress again. We have been through quite a peculiar six months, and now, at last, to be in a meeting venue again, seeing people face to face, what an experience!”

Ronald Kötteritzsch, Director Marketing & Sales, said: “We have lived through gloomy times like almost everybody else, but currently there are signs of recovery which are an encouragement to us and could be an encouragement to our industry colleagues. The purpose of this video is to show that face-to-face meetings are possible again even with somewhat larger numbers of persons, provided thorough health and hygiene – including social distancing – is observed. At the same time, the video is meant to show that – notwithstanding all the opportunities which are provided by digital technologies, nothing can replace face-to-face meetings.”