Why is there a charge for attending this conference virtually?
A virtual conference organised by a non-academic organisation carries several costs. A non-exhaustive list of these costs includes: administrative staff and sub-contractor salaries, national insurance; website hosting, design, maintenance and updating; accounts and taxes; business insurance; software licences; equipment, and office space. These are fixed costs and are not reduced whether an event is held virtually or in-person.
There are costs even for the conferences organised by academic institutions and societies; however, these costs are generally absorbed by the institutional infrastructure (IT support, computers, software licences, administrators, office space, etc.), academic salaries and grants from funding bodies.