Few of the aerospace companies along with some business jet manufacturers such as Textron Inc and General Dynamics Corp’s Gulfstream division expressed, they are no longer planning to attend the Singapore Airshow because of the latest coronavirus epidemic.
Singapore’s move to combat Coronavirus
The trade portion of the biggest airshow in Asia is held every two years, is poised to start on February 11 under the news of the quickly-spreading virus that has instigated Singapore to ban entry of every Chinese visitor and foreigner having a recent history of travel to China, where the virus originated.
The death toll from the coronavirus has increased to 361 in China, leading to the number of confirmed infections to 17,205. The flu-like virus, which can be transmitted from one person to another, has spread to more than two dozen other nations and regions.
The organizer of the Singapore Airshow, Experia Events, stated last week that the show would continue as it is planned; however, the measures from the government meant it would “undoubtedly see a reduction in terms of the number of expected exhibitors and visitors this year.” The organizer claimed that doctors and medics will be posted on standby to attend to visitors who were feeling unwell.
Last year, there were 54,000 trade attendees from 147 countries along with 1,062 participating companies who come to network, check out products and sign deals covering defense, commercial aviation, maintenance and repair operations, and business jets. Usually, it is not a big show for commercial plane orders; however, talks during the show can pave the path for deals that are concluded later in the year.
Black Eagles Aerobatic
Airbus, Boeing, and Lockheed Martin Corp (largest among other exhibitors) said they still planned to attend the show. Gulfstream and Textron explained that their decision to not attend was a precautionary measure to safeguard the health of employees.
On Monday, South Korea’s air force stated that it had decided not to participate as part of wider precautions against the coronavirus. The country’s Black Eagles aerobatic team has participated in the flying display at Singapore airshows in recent years. Rostec, Russian aerospace group is planning to send a reduced delegation to the show, according to Russian media. Rostec did not respond immediately to a request for comment.
Li Jian, the deputy administrator of the Civil Aviation Administration of China, is no longer enlisted as a speaker at a leadership conference that happens before the show on February 10.
Commercial Aircraft Corp. of China (COMAC), which is designing the C919 narrowbody jet, was expected to attend the airshow before the announcement of the travel ban. COMAC did not respond immediately to a request for comment.
The epidemic in the form of the new virus has sent shivers through the spine of financial markets, with investors citing and comparing to the 2003 outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) that also begun in China and resulted in the death of about 800 people globally.
Singapore, a Southeast Asian tourism hub where Chinese nationals make up the largest share of visitors, was among the worst-hit outside of China during the SARS outbreak.
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