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Chinese delegation skips DefExpo

LUCKNOW (PTI): The Chinese delegation has skipped the DefExpo, India's biennial exhibition of military platforms and wepons, in view of the coronavirus outbreak in China's Hubei province, officials have said.

Official delegations from over 40 countries and top executives of 172 military manufacturers are attending the exhibition which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday.

The Chinese government had conveyed to the government that it will not be able to send the delegation in view of coronavirus outbreak in Hubei province.

The Russian Trade Minister Denis Manturov also skipped the expo. However, the reasons for his trip cancellation were not known.

With China scrambling to contain the deadly virus that has killed 490 people there, India on Sunday announced temporary suspension of e-visa facility for Chinese travellers and foreigners residing there, and issued a fresh advisory, saying anyone with travel history to China since January 15 can be quarantined.

The coronavirus has also cast a shadow at the auto expo in New Delhi.

On Tuesday, automobile industry body Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) had said all Chinese companies participating in the expo have confirmed that their exhibit area would be manned by their Indian employees.

In addition, auto component makers body (ACMA) said Chinese participants at the components show of the expo are unable to travel to India due to the outbreak of the coronavirus in China.

Apart from 490 fatalities, 24,324 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus infection have been reported in 31 provincial-level regions in China.

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