Germany's Oktoberfest 2020 cancelled over coronavirus pandemic
Germany's Oktoberfest beer festival will be cancelled this year as "risks are too high" from the novel coronavirus, Bavarian state premier Markus Söder said Tuesday.
The event, which takes place annually in late September, would be too dangerous "as long as there is no vaccine", Söder said.
Even with masks and social distancing, the risk would be too high, he said, adding, "living with the coronavirus means living carefully".
Germany has banned major events until August 31st as part of measures to slow down the spread of coronavirus.
The festival, which dates back to 1810, had been scheduled to take place from September 19th until October 4th. However, there had been a question mark over Oktoberfest going ahead since it's such a huge event.
Around six million visitors in total attend the event, also known as Wiesn, in Munich every year.
The local economy generated more than €1.2 billion thanks to Oktoberfest in 2018, according to the economic department of the Bavarian state capital.
Söder, of the CSU, and Munich's Mayor Dieter Reiter, of the Social Democrats, announced in a press conference that the event was cancelled this year.
"We want to continue to protect Bavaria," Söder said. 2020 is "a year, unfortunately, without Wiesn," he added.