MWC 2020 | MWC 2020 cancelled over coronavirus concerns
Mobile World Congress (MWC) is one of the biggest smartphone shows every year, but 2020 marks the first year that the conference will not convene. The GSMA, the organization behind MWC, announced earlier today that this year’s conference would be cancelled.
Earlier this month, the GSMA had released preventative measures to be taken at MWC to reduce the risk of exposure and transmission of coronavirus. After meeting earlier this week to discuss the viability of the conference amidst the plethora of drop-outs, the GSMA decided that the best course of action was to cancel the conference entirely. Citing concerns about the coronavirus outbreak, the GSMA stated that the epidemic has made it “impossible for the GSMA to hold the event.”
In a statement on the GSMA website, the organization said:
Since the first edition of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in 2006, the GSMA has convened the industry, governments, ministers, policymakers, operators and industry leaders across the broader ecosystem.
With due regard to the safe and healthy environment in Barcelona and the host country today, the GSMA has cancelled MWC Barcelona 2020 because the global concern regarding the coronavirus outbreak, travel concern and other circumstances, make it impossible for the GSMA to hold the event.
The Host City Parties respect and understand this decision.
The GSMA and the Host City Parties will continue to be working in unison and supporting each other for MWC Barcelona 2021 and future editions.
Our sympathies at this time are with those affected in China, and all around the world.
This decision comes after multiple companies pulled out of MWC earlier this month. Big players in the mobile world, such as LG and ZTE, cancelled their plans to attend the conference in order to protect employees from potential exposure to coronavirus.
So far, the World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed over 43,000 cases of coronavirus worldwide, mostly in mainland China and Southeast Asia. The disease has caused over 1,000 deaths so far.