The coronavirus succeeds: the MWC is suspended

Barcelona, ​​Spain – May 27, 2016: aerial view of Barcelona churches, La Cathedral de la Santa Cruz and Santa Eulalia, residence of the Archbishop and the main cathedral of Barcelona, ​​and Sagrada Familia

The fear of the coronavirus has ended up charging another victim, the Mobile World Congress (MWC) that was going to be held in Barcelona, Spain, has been suspended by its organizers this Wednesday.

The decision of the GSMA, which is the association of operators in charge of the event, decided this Wednesday has had to make this decision before the numerous cancellations of large companies attending.

The decision

At an emergency meeting, the GSMA council called on its 26 members who are the world's largest telemarketers to make a decision.

The result was announced after six hours together and as they already predicted, it was the cancellation of the congress that was going to take place between February 24 and 27.

The statement could read The GSMA has decided to cancel the MWC20 because of the global concern caused by the outbreak of the coronavirus, travel and other circumstances that make it impossible to continue with the event.

Defections

There were already many cancellations that began last week with LG and continued with Sony, Ericsson, TCL, Nokia, Cisco, HMD, Intel, AT&T, Sprint, Facebook Y Mcafee among many others of smaller size.

But they have been those of European telemarketers Vodafone, Deutsche Telekom Y BT (which are also part of the GSMA), which have finished deciding the fate of this event by making the decision to retire this Wednesday.

Insufficient measures

Despite the absence of a health alert in Barcelona, ​​as recognized by the WHO, fear of the coronavirus given the nature of the event, the number of attendees and origin of many of them has achieved that despite the measures announced, it is not carry out the MWC.

The efforts of the organizers with announcements of strengthening health measures and prohibitions of assistance to those who had been in China in February were not enough. Many companies have opted to stay out with the consequences that are now known.

The costs

Among the consequences of cancellation, the economic cost is one of the biggest setbacks. It is estimated that there are about 500 million euros that will stop entering for everything related to the event from stand rentals and tickets to hotels and transport.

Who pays?

After the decision, and according to each case, it remains to be seen who should pay or stop paying the various expenses generated.

The epidemics and in this case in Barcelona also there is not are not covered by insurance. Therefore, in principle, the costs of those who have made the decision not to attend must be borne by each company.

While for now it remains to be known who compensate those who did not retire and have everything ready for the congress.

A joint press conference is expected this Thursday, which will be offered by the GSMA and the Catalan authorities, to publicize more details of this cancellation.