Tuesday, 14 July 2020
Datafiles

Asia Pacific cautiously resumes economic activity amid unfolding pandemic

By Wendy Weng

Countries are eager to strike a balance between mitigating the economic damage from lockdowns and keeping the coronavirus outbreak under control.

  • Lockdowns and restrictions are slowly being relaxed to resume economic activity and mitigate the losses from the pandemic
  • New infection clusters in South Korea have prompted the closure of establishments that have just recently reopened
  • An upward trend in infections has not stopped India and Pakistan from loosening restrictions

Governments in Asia Pacific have begun the gradual resumption of economic activity, as even countries with low caseloads face great economic damage due to lockdowns and other strict measures. Coronavirus restrictions are being lifted in phases to help prevent a second wave of infections.

South Korea, which relaxed its restrictions last month, reimposed some measures following a surge of new infections. Clusters linked to nightclubs in Seoul prompted authorities to close down such establishments once again on 9 May. Hundreds of schools that reopened on 20 May were also closed again just days after due to an outbreak at a logistics centre near Seoul, with many others postponing their reopening.

India and Pakistan, meanwhile, have begun loosening restrictions earlier than most other economies, but both continue to see an upward trend in infections. India has allowed all activities outside the outbreak-ridden “containment zones” to resume in phases since 8 June.




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