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Kuala Lumpur: MITEC in hibernation after ‘severe financial loss’

The fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic continued with news that the Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC) had gone into ‘hibernation’ – cutting headcount by 90.

The Kuala Lumpur venue – the largest of its kind in Malaysia – has closed its doors until further notice, retaining a core staff of just nine to maintain client relations during the hiatus.

Malaysia’s borders remain closed to international travelers and other restrictions on movement (MCOs) imposed by the Malaysian government have effectively ground business events to a halt.

According to a press statement MITEC’s finances had been ‘severely impacted’ and the venue expected a significant loss for 2020, notwithstanding the various cost reduction measures.

Gunther Beissel, CEO, Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre, said the decision to hibernate had not been taken lightly and reflected the ongoing ‘uncertainty’ facing the sector.

“This is not a decision that was made lightly, as we did everything in our power to support a safe and sustainable reopening of our venue after the MCO was lifted in July 2020, from implementing robust health and safety measures at our Venue to joining our industry in making a collective commitment to the Business Events safety protocols for organising events,” he said.

MITEC is assessing its staffing needs based on future bookings and the local business environment while continuing to monitor the situation and will react accordingly as market conditions improve.

“To this effect, MITEC is implementing a transition strategy which includes the retrenchment of 90 employees. As part of our commitment to our clients, stakeholders, and service providers. MITEC is ensuring the sustainability of the business by retaining a core team of nine employees,” said Beissel.