Singapore is to benefit from event security programme

Singapore will be the initial benefactor of an innovative accreditation programme aimed at strengthening event security and streamlining it into the event management process. COPE International (Control and Performance) has launched the audit-based approach as a means of integrating the safety, logistics and operation of an event. Its aim is to be able to offer organisers a unified strategy. Chairman of COPE International Peter Kock stressed the need for an open and cooperative relationship between all parties involved in staging an event. "Recent events at the JW Marriott in Jakarta exemplify the need for an industry-wide standard of security cooperation," said Kock. "The COPE programme seeks to transcend organisational boundaries so all suppliers are inextricably linked." Singapore was chosen due to its infrastructure and level of preparation. The move is likely to boost the island’s flagging meetings industry following the SARS epidemic. Raffles MD Markland Blaiklock voiced his optimism: "The launch of COPE is very timely. The certification will provide a distinct competitive advantage for Singapore’s meetings and conventions infrastructure." The programme emphasises the importance of security not just from terrorism, but also the protection of intellectual property rights and logistics. The certification process involves a two- to five-month training implementation following an independent audit. A campaign to restore corporate confidence in travel to Pacific Asia, called ‘Welcome Back’, has been launched at a cost of US$1m (£640k).

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