The community remains strong, showed the first IFES Skyperol Meeting initiated last Friday. First round of the meeting was a collection on current happenings in the represented states of IFES members attending. In general, so far all countries are in a kind of shut down – more or less strict. Sweden for example still allows gatherings of up to 50 people. Good news are also coming from China where slowly live is stepping towards normal: Shops are reopening in the greater Shanghai area, the first Volkswagen plant is going back to work.
Nevertheless, the global spread of the coronavirus is presenting countries with unprecedented challenges. It is not only a question of protecting the health of the citizens, but also of supporting jobs and companies and preserving the social cohesion. is therefore also important at European and international level. The Eurogroup has already agreed on an initial package of measures.
The IFES Management Office is collecting information on aid + measures provided in different regions to be used as examples for discussions with different state officials.
Furthermore, the whole group was united in the thought: In case racism arises it is neithter good for us, our business nor our association. We have to fight against it whenever it occurs and this is another reason that trade shows are desperatly needed for an intercultural exchange.
It was the first online meeting of this kind, the next one is planned for 09 April, 2020; 04.00 pm CEST