New York Auto Show postponed due to coronavirus fears

The New York International Auto Show, one of the most important for the auto industry in the United States, has been postponed, its organizers announced.

"We are taking this extraordinary step to help protect our attendees, exhibitors and all participants from the coronavirus," Mark Schienberg, president of the Greater New York Automobile Dealers Association, said in a statement.

The New York area dealer group organizes the annual event.

The New York Auto Show joins a growing list of cultural and sporting events around the world that have been canceled or postponed due to the widening global pandemic. Last week, the city of Austin, Texas, canceled the South by Southwest festival after a number of tech companies declined to participate.

The Chinese Grand Prix, scheduled for next month, was postponed indefinitely, according to Formula One, as was the Beijing auto show which was to open April 21.

The Geneva Motor Show in Switzerland was called off just days before it was to begin in early March after the Swiss government banned public gatherings of more than 1,000 people until March 15.

(with news agency inputs)