Coronavirus News Asia

Crippling economic impact starting to be felt

Live version of coronavirus map

A new raft of bleak economic data laid bare the crippling worldwide impact of the coronavirus pandemic on Thursday, as hard-hit Europe moved to further ease lockdown measures in a bid to get people back to work.

The United States said another 3.2 million people filed unemployment claims last week, while Germany and France reported major slumps in industrial production and Britain said its economic output would plummet by 14% this year.

A top Brazilian minister warned that Latin America’s biggest economy – and the region’s virus epicenter – risked “collapse” if stay-at-home measures were not soon lifted.

Nations around the world are under huge pressure to ease the economic pain caused by measures to halt the spread of the virus, which has claimed more than 266,000 lives, infected 3.8 million and left half of humanity under some form of lockdown.

Click on the link at the top to see a live version of virus information. Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering produced this website, which displays statistics about deaths and confirmed cases of the coronavirus, or Covid-19. Image: Johns Hopkins

Across Europe, many countries are now easing restrictions, with some shops and schools re-opening across the region, Italy allowing Catholics to soon attend mass, and Norway to open up pubs on June 1.

US President Donald Trump is also pushing for lockdowns to be lifted, as he tries to steady the world’s largest economy before voters head to the polls in November.

“This country can’t stay closed and locked down for years,” he said Thursday at a meeting with Texas Governor Greg Abbott, whose state was one of the first to lift stay-at-home rules.

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