The World Economic Forum cancelled its 2021 annual meeting scheduled for Singapore in three months’ time on Monday, saying it was not possible to hold such a large, global event due to the COVID-19 situation.
“Regretfully, the tragic circumstances unfolding across geographies, an uncertain travel outlook, differing speeds of vaccination rollout and the uncertainty around new variants combine to make it impossible to realize a global meeting with business, government and civil society leaders from all over the world at the scale which was planned,” it said in a statement.
WEF had already pushed back its special meeting in Singapore, initially scheduled for mid-May, following the announcement last year it was moving from its usual home in the Swiss alps due to the pandemic situation in Europe.
The city-state has in recent days imposed some of the tightest restrictions since it exited a lockdown last year to combat a spike in local COVID-19 infections.
Acknowledging WEF’s decision to cancel the event, the Singapore trade ministry said on Monday that it “fully appreciates the challenges caused by the ongoing global pandemic, particularly for a large meeting with a broad span of international participants.”
The WEF’s next annual meeting will instead take place in the first half of 2022. Its location and date will be determined based on an assessment of the situation later this summer, it added in a statement.
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