The annual ITB Berlin travel trade show has been cancelled amid the increasing threat of the Coronavirus, according to a statement posted on the event website.
Billed as being “The World’s Leading Travel Trade Show,” the ITB Berlin exhibition, which was due to begin on Wednesday, March 4 and was expected to draw as many as 150,000 attendees.
“We take our responsibility for the health and safety of our guests, exhibitors and employees very seriously. It is with a heavy heart that we look forward to the cancellation of ITB Berlin 2020, which has now become necessary,” Dr. Christian Göke, CEO of Messe Berlin GmBH, the trade fair company responsible for operating the exhibition grounds, said in a message on the event’s website.
Currently, there are around 50 reported cases of the Coronavirus in Germany, and federal officials, as well as the trade show’s organizers, are hoping the event’s cancellation will help avoid further contaminations.
"In their now 54-year history, ITB Berlin and Messe Berlin have never before experienced a comparable situation,” remarked Wolf-Dieter Wolf, chairman of the supervisory board of Messe Berlin. “We would like to thank all exhibitors and partners around the world who have supported ITB Berlin in the past days and weeks, and look forward to continuing our trusting cooperation with our partners in the market".