Mobile World Congress to open with uncertainty over Russian involvement

28 February 2022, 02:54

A general view of the Mobile World Congress technology trade show
A general view of Mobile World Congress. Picture: PA

The tech show, which begins in Barcelona on Monday, has confirmed a Russian Pavilion will not be present, but questions remain over wider involvement.

The Mobile World Congress (MWC) technology trade show will open on Monday with questions remaining over the level of Russian involvement in the event.

MWC is returning to Barcelona with a predominantly in-person convention for the first time since the pandemic and with strict Covid restrictions in place, but it is uncertainty over any Russian presence at the show amid the ongoing invasion of Ukraine which has taken centre stage.

Show organisers the GSMA said in a statement on its website that it “strongly condemns” Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and confirmed that a Russian Pavilion, an area used by some countries to showcase a number of smaller businesses in one place, would now not be present at the convention.

However, the organisers have not confirmed if a wider Russian presence will be allowed, larger companies are able to purchase large booth spaces for themselves on the convention floor, with the GSMA saying security for the show in Barcelona was “constantly reviewed and adjusted as information emerges”.

Late last week, GSMA chief executive John Hoffman told Reuters that “a handful, a few” Russian companies and their executives would also be banned from the show, but has not named them, saying the sanctions list was evolving.

“The situation is fast-moving, and we understand that various governments are considering broader sanctions against Russia,” the GSMA’s statement on its website says.

“In light of this emerging situation and considering the tragic loss of life, MWC seems immaterial under the circumstances.

“MWC is a unifying event with a vision to convene the mobile ecosystem to progress ways and means that connectivity can ensure people, industry, and society thrive.

“The GSMA follows all government sanctions and policies resulting from this situation.

“There will be no Russian Pavilion at MWC22.

“Security for the event is constantly reviewed and adjusted as information emerges.”

Some Russian companies, including search engine Yandex, do still appear on the exhibitor list for the show on the MWC website.

The four-day event is traditionally one of the biggest conventions for the launch of new mobile devices, with a wide range of gadgets unveiled by high-profile names including Samsung, Huawei, Nokia and others.

By Press Association

More Technology News

See more More Technology News

Glastonbury Festival 2022

Glastonbury 2022 broke data records, EE says

A child using a laptop computer

Pupils ‘AirDrop nudes in maths and use Google Drive to store images’, MPs told

Over 20 million US dollars were raised by the public for drones to fight the Russian invasion

Tech company to gift Bayraktar drones to Ukraine after millions raised by public

A mixed reality holographic patient

UK medical students training on hologram patients in world-first

Laptop

Warning new internet laws will hand ministers ‘unprecedented’ powers

A battery changing station of Nio brand electrical car (Alamy)

Two dead after Nio electric car they were testing ‘falls from building’

Alexa to expand

Amazon’s Alexa could mimic the voices of dead relatives

Ai-Da at work

Robot painting Glastonbury’s famous faces says festival atmosphere is ‘electric’

Instagram's new age verification tools, which have started being testing in the US

Instagram begins testing new age verification tools

A security surveillance camera is seen near the Microsoft office building in Beijing

Microsoft: Russian cyber spying targets 42 Ukraine allies

Social media apps on a smartphone

Meta removes ‘large numbers’ of upskirting images found on Facebook

Rio Ferdinand poses for photographs with children at 10 Downing Street to celebrate the launch of the Diana Award’s annual anti-bullying campaign Don’t Face It Alone (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

Rio Ferdinand calls for new ‘inspiring’ online platform to combat child bullying

A screenshot of the Microsoft Outlook email service

Microsoft’s Outlook email service hit by outage

Elon Musk

Elon Musk’s proposed £35.8bn Twitter deal gets board endorsement

Apple unveils new products

Guide Dogs launches scheme to provide free iPads to children with sight loss

A woman using a laptop

Cloudflare outage knocks hundreds of websites offline