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TFWA Asia Pacific Conference cancelled over coronavirus fears

The TFWA Asia Pacific Exhibition and Conference is to be cancelled amid growing fears about the global spread of coronavirus.

At a meeting on Thursday the TFWA board and management committee made the decision to cancel the show, which was due to be held in Singapore from 10 to 14 May.

The committee said its decision was the result of "widespread concern" among exhibitors and delegates with regard to the potenital severe impact of the Covid-19 virus.

The outbreak has already dealt a blow to the global travel retail industry, as travellers reconsider international trips and governments place restricitons on travel to slow the spread of the virus.

TFWA president Alain Maingreaud said: "This is not a decision that we wanted to take, nor is it one the board and management committee has taken lightly. However, we feel that cancelling the event is the best and most responsible course of action, given the health crisis that has spread throughout the world and the huge impact of the Covid-19 outbreak on our market.

"We trust that our customers and business partners, especially in Asia Pacific, will understand our decision and accept that it has been taken with the best interests of the industry and those who serve it in mind. We remain fully committed to our mission to provide the duty free and travel retail industry with a platform to prosper, and we will return to Asia Pacific in 2021 with renewed vigour and confidence in our industry's resilience and capacity for re-invention."

5 March 2020 - Bethany Whymark