International update: WHO say ‘pandemic far from over’ – China’s top scientists ‘novel coronavirus will not be eradicated’

28th April 2020 (Last Updated April 28th, 2020 10:32)

April 28

Global: The World Health Organization is concerned about the rising number of cases in Latin America, Africa, some Asian countries, as well as eastern Europe, Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, adding that the pandemic is far from over.

HSBC Holdings Plc took its biggest charge for bad debt in almost nine years as the coronavirus outbreak roiled the economies of its main markets. Banco Santander SA reported the highest provisions by a bank in continental Europe so far this quarter as it attempted to put a number on potential loan losses caused by the coronavirus outbreak.

Scheduled airline capacity rose for the first time in nearly 10 weeks as some countries begin to ease coronavirus lockdown restrictions, with a 2% increase in seats this week, according to OAG Aviation Worldwide.

China: China has reported six new coronavirus cases and no deaths.

China’s top scientists said the novel coronavirus will not be eradicated, joining a growing consensus around the world that the pathogen will likely return in waves like the flu.

Hong Kong’s chief executive Carrie Lam says civil servants will begin returning to work from 4 May but the government has still to decide on whether to ease travel and social distancing measures that are due to expire next week.

US: Donald Trump has said the US will conduct “serious investigations” into China’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak and could pursue the country for billions in damages because China “could have stopped” the coronavirus. Trump also said he “does not” take responsibility for reports that people have may ingested disinfectant after his recent comments on its effectiveness.

Austria: Austria’s lockdown to be lifted at end of April. General lockdown measures in Austria will expire at the end of April, said the country’s health minister, Rudolf Anschober.

Japan: The head of the Japan Medical Authority said it would be “difficult” to hold the Olympics, even after it was delayed until 2021, unless a vaccine is developed

New Zealand: New Zealand has partially relaxed restrictions and said that 75% of the economy is now operational as 1 million people return to work and restaurants open for takeaway.

Indonesia: More than 2,200 Indonesians may have died from Covid-19, without being recorded in official death totals, according to a Reuters analysis.

Australia: Australia’s iconic Bondi Beach has re-opened as the state of New South Wales said it would partially ease restrictions by Friday.

Malaysia: Human Rights Watch is calling on Malaysia to stop jailing people who flout the Movement Control Order that was imposed on March 18, with more than 15,000 people arrested for breaching the order so far.