With many sports events cancelled due to the coronavirus crisis, a lot of people question whether the Eurovision Song Contest can take place as planned. As of early March, the Dutch National Institute for Public Health officially stated that the contest is not yet in jeopardy.
They however say that “it can not be predicted how events will unfold in the upcoming weeks. We can only decide based on the facts that we now have,” the RIVM says. The outbreak and spread of coronavirus has already forced several other high-profile events to be cancelled or postponed, but with two months to go, in The Netherlands there are hopes that as temperatures rise in the spring, the number of new infections will slow.
The EBU and the organisers remain hopeful that Eurovision will take place as planned:
We are monitoring the situation, closely liaise with all relevant authorities and are doing everything we can to make sure the 2020 Eurovision Song Contest will happen! Let’s be confident—we still have just under two months go.
— Sietse Bakker (@SietseBakker) March 9, 2020
The coronavirus does have a lot of influence on the upcoming Head of Delegations meeting in Rotterdam. Israel and Sweden have already pulled out of the meeting and the EBU officials are not able to come to Rotterdam. The EBU has imposed a travel ban on staff until the 13th of March 13, after an EBU employee in Switzerland was confirmed to have contracted the virus.
Eurovision delegations were informed on these actions Tuesday morning. At this Head of Delegations Meeting a video conference call will be made with the countries that are not in Rotterdam.