Japan is set to allow mass gatherings to restart in August, while Hong Kong’s major theme parks begin to reopen this month and the GAA considers a ticket lottery for socially distanced events…

Japan

The Japanese government may remove capacity limits on events by August if the COVID-19 outbreak is kept under control, though social distancing will remain in place.

Currently, indoor concerts can take place with up to 100 people in attendance, while outdoor events can host up to 200 people.

The limit will be increased on June 19 to allow 1,000 attendees and then again to 5,000 from July 10.

Venues in Japan are still being advised to operate at no more than 50 per cent of their usual capacity while outdoor events are being encouraged to enforce two-metre distances between concert-goers and staff “if possible.”

When Japan lifted its state of emergency at the end of May, it was estimated that around 150,000 concerts had been cancelled, totalling a loss of 330 billion yen (€2.7 bn), according to entertainment service provider Pia.

Hong Kong Disneyland

Two of Hong Kong’s major theme parks Disneyland and Ocean Park are set to reopen shortly as part of the government’s plans to “reboot the economy” after lockdown and months of protests.

Both government-majority owned parks have been shuttered since January due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with Ocean Park scheduled to reopen from June 13, according to the territory’s Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, Edward Yau. Currently, Disneyland has no reopening date.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Hong Kong also faced a stream of protests against China’s influence in the region leading to widespread disruption.

Recently, Ocean Park was granted an urgent aid package of $696m to help stay afloat amid the lockdown.

Disney warned in a conference call in February that if Hong Kong Disneyland remains closed for two months operating income could decline by about $145m.

In addition, Hong Kong Disneyland lost $13.5m in its financial year to the end of September 2019. The firm noted that visitor numbers had increased by five-per-cent in the nine months before political and social disruptions began to affect tourist traffic.

Yau said, the South China Morning Post reports: “We want to reboot the economy in the second half of this year through new initiatives in tourism, external trade and trade insurance services. We are confident we will ride out the economic doldrums.”

Conventions and trade shows are also expected to make a comeback in July following months of cancellations.

Martin Fisch