GSMA calls for ‘no-handshake policy’ at Mobile World Congress

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on February 10, 2020

MWC2020 to go ahead as planned with certain precautions


The GSM Association (GSMA), the organisers of telecom trade event Mobile World Congress (MWC), is adopting a ‘no-handshake policy’ this year in Barcelona, Spain, as part of its health and safety measures to contain the Novel Coronavirus (nCov).

The move comes as many companies – including chipmaker Nvidia Corp, Swedish telecom gear maker Ericsson, South Korea's LG Electronics and Amazon – have withdrawn from MWC, citing the outbreak of the Novel Coronavirus (nCov).


GSMA is communicating advice to all attendees to adopt a ‘no-handshake policy’, the association said in a release posted on its website.

“Today, the GSMA is moving ahead as planned and will host MWC Barcelona February 24-27, 2020. While the GSMA confirms some large exhibitors have decided not to come to the show this year with others still contemplating next steps, we remain more than 2,800 exhibitors strong,” it said in a release dated February 9.


Preventing all travellers from Hubei province of China from participating in the event, visitors from China needing to demonstrate proof they have been outside of China 14 days prior to the event (passport stamp, health certificate) and temperature screening are other measures put in place, it said.

Hubei’s capital Wuhan is believed to be the epicentre of nCov.


Attendees will also need to self-certify they have not been in contact with anyone infected, it added.

“While further planning is underway, we will continue to monitor the situation and will adapt our plans according to developments and advice we receive. We are contending with a constantly evolving situation that will require fast adaptability,” GSMA added.

Increased cleaning and disinfection programme across all high-volume touchpoints (catering areas, surfaces, handrails and exits among others) and doubling of onsite medical support from last year are among others in place.

Earlier on February 8, Catalan Health Minister Alba Vergés presented a health preparedness measure in coordination with MWC, where she explained that Catalonia was not a risk zone for public health.

"The health system of Catalonia is prepared to diagnose and treat novel coronavirus, in perfect shape to give the most appropriate response. This must be taken into account by Catalan citizens and by all visitors coming to the MWC in the upcoming days," said Vergés said.

Published on February 10, 2020

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