Commenting on the decision, Stephen Tan, chief executive of SES commented: "Together with our exhibitors and stakeholders, we have decided not to go ahead with the shows. This is a very difficult decision borne out of necessity due to the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) outbreak and the lack of options for a suitable time frame in which to re-schedule the events. It is also our utmost priority to safeguard the well being of our exhibitors and visitors who have shown us unwavering support all these years."
As the SARS outbreak in Asia has not stabilized, exhibitors and visitors alike had expressed concerns about their safety at the shows. With the WHO and US CDC advisories against traveling to SARS affected areas, it became clear that foreign attendance at the shows would be severely affected.
Postponing the shows to the second half of the year was considered, but no suitable alternative window was available as the calendar for this period is already filled with other events such as IBC (Amsterdam), ITU World Telecom (Geneva) and Comdex (Las Vegas). Tan pointed out that many exhibitors and buyers are already committed to exhibiting at and visiting these events. It would therefore be difficult to identify a suitable slot without moving them too close to next year's shows. The next BroadcastAsia and CommunicAsia are therefore scheduled to take place from 15-18 June 2004.