All Eyes on Central Banks As COVID-19 Figure Approaches 300,000 Globally
- The number of deaths expected to surpass 12,000 today
- Germany considering a stimulus package worth 350 billion euros
- Spain joins Italy as Europe’s hotspot while Iran leads Asia in new confirmed cases
The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases globally is approaching the 300,000 mark, while the death toll is advancing towards 12,000. Countries across the globe are announcing new stricter measures on a daily basis while central banks prepare bailout plans.
According to media reports, Germany is considering a stimulus package worth around 350 billion euros, in net new debt, to counter the economic crisis fueled by the coronavirus outbreak.
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This sum is likely to be transferred to three major institutions: 150 billion to the Government, 100 billion to the economic stability fund and public-sector development bank KfW for loans to struggling businesses.
Germany reported 2,705 new confirmed cases to reach a figure of 16,662, while the death toll has risen to 47. The numbers are still better than those in Italy and Spain, as the latter reported 324 new death cases today with 4,946 new confirmed infections.
In Asia, Iran is considered to be the new hotspot. The number of people infected has surpassed 20,000, with a death toll rising to 1,556.
“If people take it lightly and think that the coronavirus outbreak is over, and if urban and inter-city traffic and gatherings in resorts and natural parks increase … then in one to two weeks we will see a new peak of the disease,” said health ministry spokesman Kianoush Jahanpour.
Although the first peak of infections seems to be over in Southeast Asia, countries such as Hong Kong are concerned that a high number of people returning from overseas could trigger another wave of infections.
“The influx of people returning from overseas will last at least two weeks … The recent epidemic caused by imported cases is much more severe than any period of combating the pandemic in the past two months,” Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said.
“It is more difficult to handle and (will) most likely lead to a large and continuous community outbreak.”
Singapore finds itself in a similar situation after it was reported that out of 47 new cases, 39 were imported and had a travel history.