Wednesday, 6 October 2021

Sounds like a massive rent seeking scam to me.

From The Guardian:

Countries and organisations planning to host events at vital UN climate talks in Glasgow next month have said they fear that increased costs at this year’s event will cause problems for developing nations.

Multiple participants said that the cost of renting Cop26 pavilions – event spaces for hosting workshops, panel discussions and keynote speeches during the conference – is considerably higher than it was at Cop25 in Madrid, with some saying it had increased by as much as 30%.

Organisations say they were told that a combination of Brexit and the pandemic were to blame for the high costs. It comes after the Financial Times reported that one organisation was quoted nearly £500,000 for its space.

The total rental value of such a site relates purely to how many 'customers' you can meet and how much money your wring out of them and/or how much 'greenwashing' you need to do. Sure, post-Brexit, wages for skilled labour have gone up (that was an argument FOR Brexit) but the real costs come off the total rental value to give a lower pure rent. If the real costs were more than the total rental value, nobody would want to exhibit.

So neither Brexit nor the pandemic were to blame, the rents here are a function of how much money is sloshing around the whole 'environmental-industrial complex'.

(As Treasurer for the Labour Land Campaign, I had to sign off a payment for our stand at this year's Labour Party conference, that was a couple of grand just to have a table with leaflets for two or three days. If - big if - they can drum up a hundred new members chipping in their sub's for a couple of years, it was worth it, in purely commercial terms.)


Doonhamer said...

The important people who can travel from developing countries will just be using the overseas aid they recieve. Only instead of going to Swiss banks a small ammount is going to enterprising Weegies. The ladies of Glesgae I am sure will up their act to reflect the higher fees.
I am sure there will be no complaints of gouging. Unless Miss MacWhiplash forgets the safe word.

Mark Wadsworth said...

DH, exactly. If you want to keep that aid a-flowin', you've got to be there and press the flesh, wring out a few crocodile tears, wrinse and repeat. With a bit left over for visits to Miss* Mac Whiplash.

* Or indeed Mrs, Mr or Mx Whiplash. Intersectioanlism. Didn't they teach you this at school?

ontheotherhand said...

Presumably they can show us the future by only heating the hall to 18 and turning off the lights if the wind is not blowing those days? Perhaps the 30% cost increase is also the embedded green levy in energy and other input prices?

Bayard said...

DH, foreign aid from the UK is paid in sterling. Where is the only place in the world where the grateful recipients can spend that sterling? Yes, the UK, so every penny of it always comes back to us eventually. It's just a massive government subsidy to UK businesses. If it wasn't, the Tories would have got rid of it years ago.

OTOH, it's not the costs that have gone up by 30%, it's what the customers are being charged, which bears no relation to the costs.

Mark Wadsworth said...

OTOH, see B's comment. Higher real costs don't (and can't possibly) affect total rental value (if they exceed total rental value, people would just walk away). Total rental value is set by the number of customers whose business you hope to solicit.

B "It's just a massive government subsidy to UK businesses"

Close but no cigar. The oligarchs and kleptocrats use the money to buy UK land and buildings. All subsidies accrue to...

L fairfax said...

Increasing the wages for skilled labour is not so good if you are a lawyer married to a former PM with lots of houses to maintain.
Which would explain why the Blairs are anti it.

In the Science Museum one reason given for why the Industrial revolution began here was because wages were higher and so companies invested in productivity.

Bayard said...

Mark, I was including landlording in "businesses".