mobile world congress barcelona

Matt Atlas

Mobile World Congress Canceled Over Coronavirus Fears

The Mobile World Congress trade show will not go on. Organizers canceled the largest phone expo in the world after a mass exodus of exhibitors and companies over coronavirus fears. The show was to run 24 – 27 February in Barcelona.

The GSMA, an industry trade body, hosts the conference. GSMA chief John Hoffman said today that due to global concerns about the coronavirus epidemic, it is “impossible” to hold the fair. However, the association announced last week that the trade fair would be on schedule.

Telecom operators Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone and BT, as well as Nokia and Ericsson, canceled their participation in the trade fair.

The Spanish authorities have repeatedly stated that participation in the fair is safe despite the coronavirus epidemic. However, they failed to address the concerns of many exhibitors.

Previously, prominent Chinese exhibitors, led by Huawei Technologies, promised to take part in the trade fair. For example, ZTE announced that its employees coming from mainland China to the show would undergo a two-week quarantine upon arrival.