On the 11th March the World Health Organization (WHO) officially declared the viral infection COVID-19 a pandemic; the first outbreak to be designated as such in over ten years.
The European Union has yet to initiate a coordinated response to the increase in the number of cases, instead leaving member states to introduce appropriate sanctions depending on circumstances. From closing borders in Germany, isolationist measures in Italy and Spain, and banning public gatherings in Ireland and Austria.
Meanwhile, many international companies working within the European Union have taken a precautionary approach to limit or even ban non-essential travel for their employees.
Health and safety is, of course, of paramount importance, and with the movement of potential attendees and size of potential gatherings limited by precautionary measures, the knock-on effect of COVID-19 is that it has seen a number of industry event organisers with conferences scheduled to take place in March, April and May elect to reschedule them until later in the year.
The gathering of the European fuel and lubricants industry at UNITI in April has been rescheduled to September, ELGI the European Lubricating Grease Annual Meeting due to take place in Hamburg, has also been put back to the autumn.
Other events due to be held over the spring remain under review even though some key events such as the Motor Show held in Geneva earlier this year, still went ahead behind closed doors.
More information on the rescheduled dates of key industry events can be found in our Upcoming Industry Events section on page 57 or on the Lube Media website at www.lube-media.com/events.