LONDON – The planned special meeting of the World Economic Forum in Saudi Arabia next month has been called off because of fears over the spread of the coronavirus.
Instead, the gathering has been rescheduled for Spring 2021. It would have been the first time the Kingdom has hosted the high-profile gathering.
It joins a list of events across the region and the world have been canceled or delayed for public health reasons.
‘Given the dynamic situation surrounding the Coronavirus globally and after careful consideration, the World Economic Forum and our partners in Saudi Arabia have agreed to reschedule this Special Meeting to Spring 2021’. The World Economic Forum said in a statement to Arab News.
‘Public private cooperation has never been more important. We remain committed to driving a forward – looking agenda for the region through digital interactions bringing together leaders from all stakeholders groups at the highest level’.
The announcement came as global stock markets tumbled on Friday and oil fell to its lowest since July 2017 as world health officials warned some countries were failing to take the coronavirus crisis seriously enough.
‘This is not a drill’, WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told reporters. ‘This is not time to give up. This is not a time for excuses’. ‘This is a time for pulling out all the stops’.
The special meeting of the World Economic Forum was due to take place on April 5 and 6.
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