Coronavirus: Decision on Eurovision Song Competition impact delayed to mid-April

Eurovision Song Contest in Rotterdam 2020
Eurovision Song Contest in Rotterdam 2020Photo: Screenshot/Eurovision Song Contest/YouTube

The Eurovision Song Contest, scheduled to happen in Rotterdam in May, will not be canceled as yet, according to Rotterdam tourism alderman Said Kasmi (D66). "I think there should be an examination in mid-April about how things stand then. So we still have plenty of time," Kasmi said to newspaper AD. The Rotterdam Marathon will also happen as planned.

The Rotterdam city council is meeting on Thursday to discuss the consequences of the coronavirus crisis for Rotterdam. Part of that discussion will be whether the international song festival, which is expected to bring tens of thousands of visitors from 41 countries to Rotterdam, should be canceled. Kasmi doesn't expect any bad news yet.

On Wednesday, the city presented a 'checklist' that can be used to decide whether an event should be canceled. Negative factors on that list include large numbers of attendees, long journeys, and singing fans. But Kasmi emphasized that the city is firstly relying on RIVM guidelines when making such decisions. "We are also monitoring it ourselves, and we see that the situation around corona changes every day," he said. Making a decision now would be premature, according to the alderman.

The Rotterdam Marathon will continue as planned on April 5th for now, the organizers said to AD on Thursday. Though it will happen without any participants from Kenya. Due to the coronavirus, Kenya has banned all its athletes from participating in international events for the next four weeks.