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16/04/20 COVID-19 Global News Update

16 April 2020
Overview of the latest developments on Coronavirus (COVID-19):

International

Haiti to reopen textile factories despite coronavirus fears

Apr 15th, 2020viaReuters UK - World News

Haiti will reopen its key textile industry next week, Prime Minister Joseph Jouthe said on Wednesday, suggesting the impoverished nation had escaped the worst of the global coronavirus pandemic by imposing early on a state of emergency.

New Zealand Rugby cuts 50% of wage costs in response to coronavirus crisis

Apr 15th, 2020viaReuters UK - UK Sports News

The All Blacks and many of their fellow top professional players could lose half of their income if no more rugby is possible this year under cuts announced by New Zealand Rugby (NZR) on Thursday.

Schools urged to reopen as Australia mulls easing of coronavirus restrictions

Apr 15th, 2020viaReuters UK - Top News

Australia’s federal government on Thursday urged state premiers to reopen schools as it considers how to start winding back some other restrictions on movement that have helped slow the spread of the coronavirus throughout the country.

Amazon to close French warehouses over coronavirus concerns

Apr 15th, 2020viaThe Guardian Australia World News

Amazon has ordered the temporary closure of all six of its French distribution centres, one day after a French court ruled it was not doing enough to protect its workers in the country amid the coronavirus pandemic.


UK

Coronavirus: Major UK takeaway chains start to reopen

Apr 15th, 2020viaBBC - Front Page

Three major takeaway chains in the UK have announced limited reopening programmes after closing during the coronavirus lockdown. Burger King, KFC and Pret A Manger have or will open certain restaurants around the country for delivery only.

Coronavirus: NI firm helps develop shield for healthcare staff

Apr 16th, 2020viaBBC World - Northern Ireland

A County Londonderry firm has teamed up with medical experts to develop a shield to protect healthcare staff. It sits over patients' heads and is being used across the world. Seating Matters in Limavady took an existing prototype and worked with Irish designers and anaesthetists to produce the item.

Coronavirus: March retail sales 'plummet'

Apr 15th, 2020viaBBC News - Business

Retail sales declined at the worst rate on record last month as the government's coronavirus lockdown measures took hold, a trade body says. Total UK sales fell by 4.3% compared with the previous year, the sharpest decline since 1995, the British Retail Consortium (BRC) said.

Easyjet says it has raised £1.9bn to help ride out coronavirus fleet grounding

Apr 16th, 2020viaCity AM - News

Budget airline Easyjet said today that it had has raised £1.8bn-£1.9bn in extra cash to help it survive the shutdown caused by the coronavirus epidemic. The airline said today that it had signed two term loans totalling around £400m which are secured against aircraft and mature in 2022.


Day-to-Day Impact

Coronavirus: Foreign workers fly in 'to train UK farm pickers'

Apr 15th, 2020viaBBC News - Cambridgeshire

A farming group has chartered a plane to fly in staff from Romania so the European workers can help train its seasonal UK workforce. Grower G's has recruited 180 skilled workers who will land on Thursday.

Coronavirus: Decision expected on school exam results

Apr 15th, 2020viaBBC News - UK

A decision on how GCSE, AS and A-Level results will be awarded this summer is expected later. Arlene Foster said on Wednesday that Education Minister Peter Weir would give a statement to the assembly on Thursday. Earlier, Mr Weir warned there was no "perfect solution" to awarding grades.

Coronavirus: Decision on 'virtual' Parliament due

Apr 16th, 2020viaBBC News - UK

A decision on whether MPs can take part in some Commons business virtually is due to be made later. It is understood the House of Commons Commission, which is responsible for the administration and services of the Commons, is highly likely to nod through the plan.

Coronavirus: Three-week lockdown extension set to be approved

Apr 16th, 2020viaBBC - Front Page

Ministers are later expected to announce a three-week extension to the coronavirus lockdown. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab will lead emergency Cobra committee and cabinet meetings about the continuation of social distancing measures.


Global Situation

UnitedHealth maintains 2020 outlook, but warns of potential COVID-19 impact

Apr 15th, 2020viaReuters UK - Business News

UnitedHealth Group Inc (UNH.N) on Wednesday reaffirmed its financial targets for the year, but cautioned it was uncertain of the impact of elective procedures being postponed by Americans during the COVID-19 pandemic.

China sees drop in imported coronavirus cases but local infections rise

Apr 15th, 2020viaReuters UK - Health News

China reported on Thursday fewer new coronavirus cases involving travellers arriving from overseas, but locally transmitted infections rose, with the Chinese capital seeing new local cases for the first time in more than three weeks.

Coronavirus: World economy 'may face double recession'

Apr 16th, 2020viaBBC News - Business

The world economy already faces an economic downturn worse than the Great Depression. But this could be followed by another “possibly much worse downturn”, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).

Coronavirus: Asian economies won't grow this year, says IMF

Apr 15th, 2020viaBBC News - Business

Economies in Asia will see zero growth this year for the first time in 60 years, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said. Its bleak outlook for the region comes as it warns the global economy will face the "worst recession since the Great Depression".

Switzerland to announce three-phase exit from coronavirus restrictions

Apr 16th, 2020viaReuters UK - World News

Switzerland’s government is due to unveil on Thursday how it plans to relax the country’s shutdown put in place to halt the spread of the new coronavirus epidemic, Swiss media reported.

Coronavirus: Global stocks set to sink as economic reality bites

Apr 16th, 2020viaCity AM - Business

Global stocks were set to fall today as “ugly” economic data and weak bank earnings suggest a recession is on the horizon. Asian stocks dropped today, with Japan’s Nikkei falling 1.2 per cent while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index dropped 0.7 per cent.

Mexico could force businesses to close if they violate coronavirus rules

Apr 16th, 2020viaReuters UK - World News

Mexico could force the closure of companies in non-essential sectors if they refuse to suspend operations during a state of emergency to curb spread of the coronavirus, a top health official said on Wednesday.

Latest on the spread of the coronavirus around the world

Apr 16th, 2020viaReuters UK - Health News

Reported cases of the coronavirus crossed 2.05 million globally and more than 136,600 people have died, according to a Reuters tally as of 0200 GMT on Thursday.

Portugal flattens coronavirus curve, but too early to reopen economy

Apr 15th, 2020viaReuters UK - Business News

Portugal’s coronavirus curve has flattened but the good news is still not enough for the country to lift lockdown measures and reopen its tourism-dependent, export-oriented economy, government ministers said on Wednesday.

Australia says coronavirus restrictions to continue at least four more weeks

Apr 16th, 2020viaReuters UK - Health News

Australia will keep in place restrictions implemented to curb the spread of the coronavirus for at least four more weeks, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Thursday, despite signs that Canberra has been successful in slowing infection rates.

President Trump suspends WHO funding over coronavirus response

Apr 15th, 2020viaChannel 4 UK - News

The US has been the largest single contributor of funding to the World Health Organization - providing about £400 million a year.

Judge voids Puerto Rico pension law, delays effective date due to coronavirus

Apr 15th, 2020viaReuters UK - Financial Services News

A U.S. judge ruled on Wednesday that bankrupt Puerto Rico cannot fund more than $300 million in annual pension and health costs for its municipalities, but suspended the effective date of the order for three weeks due to the ongoing coronavirus health crisis.

'It's catastrophic': Fiji's colossal tourism sector devastated by coronavirus

Apr 15th, 2020viaThe Guardian Australia World News

On a typical evening Suva’s Holiday Inn is packed with guests from all over the world.

 

To read more from DWF on COVID-19 visit our insights hub >

Further Reading

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