Coronavirus Outbreak Update

Advice for Marketing Liverpool partners regarding the current Coronavirus outbreak in mainland China.

UPDATE: 14/02/20

The World Health Organisation has confirmed the official name for the novel coronavirus as COVID-19.

Public Health England have published a blog around contact tracing explaining what it is and how it is being used to tackle the spread of COVID-19.

The Business Events Partnership has reported that an individual who has been identified to have COVID-19 attended a conference at QEII conference centre last week. QEII are working closely with Public Health England and the event organisers to trace the delegates and give them advice on the situation as a precaution. The QEII Centre remains fully open and events will continue to take place as normal. Staff and suppliers have been briefed on the situation and actions to take if they have any concerns about their health. A media plan has also been put in place to ensure that everyone has a clear view of the current evolving situation.

As of 14 February, a total of 2,964 people have been tested in the UK, of which 2,955 were confirmed negative and 9 positive.

Globally as of 14 February there are 64,437 cases of which 63,851 are in China.

The fatalities to date are 1,383 (1,380 of these are within China, 1 in the Philippines, 1 in Hong Kong and 1 in Japan).

The China Britain Business Council has shared a regional response update where they outline how local and provincial governments in China are supporting local and foreign businesses, the most common measures include:

– Preferential tax and social security policies, with filing deadlines deferred or suspended

– Direct financial support for heavily affected businesses

– Rent reductions or suspension

– Preferential loan and financing support

– Reduced utility fees

– Bespoke legal and administrative aid

– Employment support and special labour regulations regarding quarantined employees

Travel related updates

· The Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) issued a statement on 13 February outlining enhanced policies due to the ongoing COVID-19, the enhanced measures include:

– CLIA Members are to deny boarding to all persons who have travelled from, visited or transited via airports in China, including Hong Kong and Macau, within 14 days before embarkation.

– CLIA Members are to deny boarding to all persons who, within 14 days before embarkation, have had close contact with, or helped care for, anyone suspected or diagnosed as having COVID-19, or who is currently subject to health monitoring for possible exposure to COVID-19.

– CLIA Members are to conduct pre-boarding screening necessary to effectuate these prevention measures. Enhanced screening and initial medical support are to be provided, as needed, to any persons exhibiting symptoms of suspected COVID-19.

All other advice remains unchanged

UPDATE: 31/01/20

As you will be aware the situation is developing fast and earlier this week included the significant announcement from BA and Virgin Atlantic of the cancellation of all inbound and outbound flights to mainland China until further notice (currently excluding Hong Kong).

No doubt some of our partners who are active in the Chinese market may now be experiencing the knock on effects from the situation. This may also include a wider geographical market area as time progresses.

Chinese authorities have ordered all their national travel agencies and online travel companies to temporarily suspend business, leisure, group travel and ‘ticket and hotel’ products effective immediately. Whilst individual travel has not been mentioned specifically, the authorities are keen to ensure that the disease is contained.

The Chinese Government are asking travel companies, operators and tourism businesses around the world to facilitate booking changes and cancellations to help reduce the movement of crowds and reduce the spread of the virus. At the moment the Chinese Government are not offering any compensation to cancelled groups.

This is a fast moving situation and the best source of information for any visitors with individual questions or concerns is Public Health England. Visitors can keep up to date with the latest advice from the UK Government’s website here
and here.

VisitBritain also has updates on its website.

Marketing Liverpool is in communication with VisitBritain regarding developments and advice.

We are therefore asking our partners to share with us any information from the ground about if and how this may be effecting your business.

This may include bookings, cancellations, communications with group tour operators etc.

Your co-operation will be much appreciated. We would be grateful if you could communicate this to us by email to James Wood jwood@marketingliverpool.co.uk.

We are actively monitoring this situation and should further developments happen, we will update this web page.

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