World Press Photo Exhibition 2020 in Hong Kong

Statement on the cancellation of the World Press Photo Exhibition 2020 in Hong Kong

The annual World Press Photo Exhibition showcases the winning photographs and stories from our annual Photo Contest to a global audience. An independent international jury selects the prize-winning images across eight categories that are later assembled in a year-long worldwide traveling exhibition.

The World Press Photo Exhibition 2020 in Hong Kong, arranged by a local organizing committee, and sponsored by the Netherlands Consulate General in Hong Kong and Macau, was due to open at the Koo Ming Kown Exhibition Gallery at the Hong Kong Baptist University on 1 March. On Thursday 25 February, we were made aware of the cancellation of the exhibition by the venue, citing campus safety and security, and concerns related to the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The World Press Photo Foundation is a global organization connecting professionals and the audience through trustworthy journalism and storytelling. We believe people should have access to a wide range of high-quality visual stories and regret that the exhibition cannot be visited in Hong Kong at this time. We are currently in touch with our partner to find another venue and still hope to be able to open the World Press Exhibition 2020 in Hong Kong.

We are committed to supporting the conditions for freedom of expression, freedom of inquiry, freedom of the press, and are following media reports suggesting that the cancellation might be the result of pressure on the content of the exhibition.” - Laurens Korteweg, Exhibitions director at the World Press Photo Foundation.