News of the cancellation of the next Boot Düsseldorf 2022 has been bouncing around in various German media in recent hours. After the 2021 edition, which was first postponed and then cancelled, the organizers of the Düsseldorf Boat Show have apparently been forced to cancel the 2022 edition too because of the Coronavirus. Scheduled to take place from 22nd to 30th January, the event was cancelled due to a surge in infections caused by the Omicron variant of Covid-19. In recent weeks, Germany has also seen a worrying increase in the number of infections and the government has decided to place new restrictions.
Yesterday, according to a report on the German website floatmagazin.de, the Ministry of Health of North Rhine-Westphalia decided to adopt new restrictions due to the worsening pandemic situation. The advance of the Omicron variant and the exponential increase in Covid-19 infections have forced the North Rhine-Westphalia region, with its capital Düsseldorf, to impose strict restrictions, including on trade fairs and events. In particular, public events and major trade fairs with more than 750 visitors would be banned until the end of January, making it impossible to hold the Boot Düsseldorf, which attracted around 250,000 visitors in the last editions.
The cancellation of Boot Düsseldorf had been in the air for several days. In the Baden-Württemberg region of Germany, a ban on trade fairs and events with visitors had already been imposed on December 17th. In fact, many boatyards and exhibitors had triggered the domino of cancellations a few weeks ago. Nautor’s Swan and X-Yachts were the first to withdraw, followed closely by the Fountaine Pajot group and other yards such as Absolute Yachts. The organizers, however, remained optimistic and confident of the event’s success right to the end, including chairman and CEO Wolfram Diener. Mr.Diener was confident in the positive example (despite numerous cancellations and restrictions) of METS Amsterdam, held last November despite rising contagions and galloping restrictions. Now, however, it is Diener himself who is reporting the news of the cancellation, telling the German portal rp-online.de: “It is with a heavy heart that we are forced to announce the cancellation of the event”.