UAE postpones Travel Expo over Coronavirus concerns

UAE postpones Travel Expo over Coronavirus concerns

The UAE announced Monday delaying a regional travel and tourism exhibition in Dubai in April to late June due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The country announced 14 new cases of the virus; bringing the total number of people diagnosed to 59, state news agency WAM reported.

Of the new cases; there were four Emiratis, three Italians, two each from Bangladesh and Nepal. Besides, a Russian, Syrian and Indian diagnosed with the virus, WAM reported, citing the country’s Health Ministry.

Arabian Travel Market is one of the Middle East’s biggest travel fairs. It will be from June 28 to July 1 due to the coronavirus outbreak, organizers said.

“The announcement has been made at the earliest opportunity to give as much notice as possible to all stakeholders enabling them to make the necessary arrangements to reschedule their plans, and ensure even stronger attendance in June.”

The outgoing president of the airline Emirates, Tim Clark, was due to give one of his last interviews at the event before stepping down in June.

The virus outbreak has led to canceling or postponing major events across the country.

Other Gulf Countries

Kuwait on Monday registered three new virus cases, bringing the total to 65. One patient has recovered.

The health ministry spokesman said two of the patients contracted the disease after traveling from Iran. The third had traveled to Azerbaijan.

The majority of cases in the Middle East are back to Iran.

Kuwait said it would close all cinemas, theaters, wedding halls and hotel meeting rooms until further notice. It also extended a temporary school closure by two weeks until March 26, the government communications office said.

Bahrain closed down a unit in a major hospital in Manama after a medical intern tested positive for the virus, state news agency BNA reported, citing the health ministry.

Authorities halted travel by Bahraini officials abroad until further notice. The country has diagnosed 95 individuals with the virus.

Oman reported two new cases on Monday to bring the number diagnosed with the disease to 18.

Qatar reported three new infections on Monday to bring the number of people diagnosed to 18. It also followed other Gulf countries by announcing it was suspending schools and universities from March 10.

The health ministry also urged all citizens and residents to avoid public gatherings and postpone all non-essential travel.