Dubai Expo 2020 ‘closely monitoring’ Coronavirus Situation

Organisers say they are hopeful that global efforts will succeed in managing the virus

Dubai Expo 2020 organisers are closely monitoring the coronavirus situation and are hopeful that it will be under control by the time the event begins.

The 6-month long expo starts on 20 October 2020 and runs until 10 April 2021. The 1st Expo to be held in the MENASA region, it will include pavilions from 192 nations, with up to 25-M visits expected during the show.

The safety and well-being of everyone visiting Expo 2020 Dubai is of paramount importance to us, and we are working closely with the UAE’s ministry of Health and Prevention to apply the guidance that they have provided,” an Expo 2020 spokesperson said.

Expo does not open until October this year, and we will continue to follow the situation closely. We are hopeful that global efforts will succeed in managing the virus.”

Several events have so far been cancelled or postponed over fears of the coronavirus, which is continuing to spread across the world.

Locally, the Dubai International Boat Show, Dubai Lynx as well as Dubai’s Gov Games 2020 have been postponed, while the last leg of the UAE Tour cycling competition was cancelled after 2 members of the Italian technical team tested positive for the virus.

Globally, discussions are also reportedly underway about whether to continue with the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, scheduled to begin in late July.

According to some reports, organisers are even considering the possibility of holding it behind closed doors and broadcasting it live on TV, though not likely.

While the World Health Organisation (WHO) has not yet declared the outbreak a ‘pandemic’, the death toll from the virus has crossed 3,300, while the number of cases stands at under 100,000 as of 9 March.

It’s not either/or,” said WHO director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “We must focus on containment while doing everything we can to prepare for a potential pandemic.”

By Aarti Nagraj

Paul Ebeling, Editor

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