The organiser of Geneva's international expo of fine watches said Thursday it had decided to cancel the April event because of the spread of the new coronavirus.
Watches are displayed during an Only Watch Charity Auction for research into Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a biennal auction of 50 one-off luxury timepieces made by the finest watch manufacturers in Geneva on November 9, 2019. (File photo: AFP)
"In view of the latest developments concerning the worldwide spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus... the decision has been taken to cancel the upcoming edition of Watches and Wonders Geneva" said the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie.
The Geneva event is a major trade show for the luxury watch industry and is particularly important for the many Switzerland-based makers of fine timepieces.
China and the Asian region have become increasingly important in recent years for watchmakers as they have for other luxury goods manufacturers.
Other large international business gatherings, such as Europe's top mobile phone trade show in Barcelona, have been cancelled amid the outbreak, which has now killed over 2,700 people and infected some 78,000.
The Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie said "in order to protect the health and wellbeing of all our guests, press, partners and teams" it had decided that it should cancel the event, due to have taken place in Geneva from April 25-29.