The new year brings renewed focus and energy, and as members of the MWC Barcelona community know, it is also when preparation moves into high gear. In eight weeks, we will open the doors of Fira Gran Via to the global mobile ecosystem and, I can’t wait to welcome everyone.
This new year also begins with more news related to the pandemic. Global circumstance continues to evolve and, one thing is becoming apparent, we will be dealing with the effects of Covid-19 for years to come. In times like these, responsible leadership is more critical than ever.
This type of leadership inspires innovation and the kind of investment that moves our industry, society and, economy forward while keeping our community safe. Considering this and the fact that present circumstances have made connectivity profoundly critical, the GSMA would only consider a change to our plans under the direction of the Spanish authorities.
In 2021 we organised and hosted three MWC events in Shanghai, Los Angeles, and Barcelona. Each event took place in a unique context but, our strategy was consistent. Firstly, to work in close partnership with relevant authorities to ensure the event could go ahead safely for staff, workers, exhibitors, visitors, suppliers, partners, and the local community; secondly, to provide up-to-the-minute information. This experience combined with advances by health experts, scientists and, governments give us confidence that we can convene safely again in 2022. MWC health & safety measures are on our Committed Community page here.
We expect over 1,500 exhibitors in February, with attendees registered from 150 countries. You will meet decision-makers, hear from thought leaders and, close deals. Policymakers will meet through our prestigious Ministerial Programme, and all are encouraged to experience the 4YFN start-up conference and brand new for 2022, Industry City. Over the four days, you will see the vibrancy, reach, and diversity that puts MWC at the forefront of the kind of innovation that addresses critical challenges across society. This is Connectivity Unleashed and potential is everywhere.
A lot has changed in the past two years but our resolve to reconvene the industry is unwavering, and I encourage every member of this community to support one another. My personal thanks to all the business leaders who are right now planning their attendance.
Of course, none of this is possible without the continued support and partnership of Spain, Catalonia, Barcelona, FIRA and the Host City Parties. Barcelona is truly the home of MWC, and its gravitational pull is strong. MWC will always be available online, but I hope to see you in Barcelona.