Geneva Auto Show Cancelled Due To Coronavirus Fears.
The Geneva International Motor Show (GIMS) said it was cancelling the annual exhibition after consultation with the Swiss government.
A spokesperson answering Forbes questions on the telephone, said the show was called off Friday morning after talking to health authorities about the impact of the coronavirus.
Media events were scheduled to start Monday, including the European Car of the Year announcement. Official media days are March 3 and March 4. The show was to open to the public March 5 through 15.
The Swiss government earlier said it banned large events expected to draw more than 1,000 people as an extraordinary measure to curb the new coronavirus epidemic.
“In view of the current situation and the spread of the coronavirus, the Federal Council has categorized the situation in Switzerland as ‘special’ in terms of the Epidemics Act,” the cabinet said after a meeting.
“Large-scale events involving more than 1,000 people are to be banned. The ban comes into immediate effect and will apply at least until 15 March.”
“We regret this situation, but the health of all participants is our and our exhibitors’ top priority. This is a case of force majeure and a tremendous loss for the manufacturers who have invested massively in their presence in Geneva. However, we are convinced that they will understand this decision,” said Maurice Turrettini, Chairman of the Foundation Board. We would like to warmly thank all those involved in the organisation of the 2020 edition of GIMS.
A few days before the opening of the event, the construction of the stands was very nearly complete. A week ago, during the press conferences announcing the 2020 edition, there was nothing to suggest that such a measure was necessary. The situation changed with the appearance of the first confirmed coronavirus diseases in Switzerland and the injunction of the Federal Council on 28.02.2020. The event is cancelled due to this decision.