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Facebook and Amazon pull out of Mobile World Congress due to coronavirus

News World
Facebook and Amazon pull out of Mobile World Congress due to coronavirus

The Covid-19 coronavirus continues to cause disruption, as Amazon, Sony and Facebook have pulled out of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.

The tech giants have said they will not attend the event, which is taking place from 24-27 February. It is expected to draw more than 100,000 attendees and over 2,400 companies.

A Facebook spokesperson said that “out of an abundance of caution” its employees will not attend the event “due to the evolving public health risks related to coronavirus.”

The summit will go ahead as planned, event organiser and mobile operator lobbying group GSMA said in a statement on Sunday, but it will be restricting access for visitors from China. Despite the withdrawal of “some large exhibitors…we remain more than 2,800 exhibitors strong,” it said.

Travel continues to be disrupted in the Asia region. In Hong Kong, all border crossings have been closed except for Hong Kong International Airport, the Zhuhai-mAcau Bridge and Shenzhen Bay checkpoint.

All flights to and from China have been banned in Malaysia, Indonesia, and Vietnam. Some restrictions are in place in most other countries in the region.

The Chinese Grand Prix has also been postponed indefinitely. The event was scheduled to take place on 19 April in Shanghai.

Stuart Wood is a news reporter across the Mash Media editorial portfolio. He writes for CMW alongside sister publications Conference News, Exhibition News, Access All Areas and Exhibition World.