Here are the latest updates from Japan and beyond on the coronavirus outbreak:
As of 11 p.m., Wednesday, April 8 (Japan time)
- The Japan Medical Association said Wednesday that a medical support nonprofit organization will set up a multilingual hotline to help foreigners in Japan for inquiries regarding the new coronavirus.
- Tokyo confirmed 144 new coronavirus infections Wednesday, metropolitan government officials said, marking the highest daily increase yet in the Japanese capital.
- U.S. President Donald Trump said Tuesday that he may put on hold his country’s funding to the World Health Organization, criticizing the U.N. body for being “China-centric” and “wrong” in its response to the new coronavirus.
- Singapore on Wednesday imposed a strict control order that bans all social gatherings, including at home, with harsh penalties such as fines and jail time to enforce a partial lockdown that started this week to curb community spread of the new coronavirus.
- To counter the economic crisis caused by the global coronavirus pandemic, Japan adopted Tuesday its biggest-ever emergency economic package worth 108 trillion yen ($990 billion), equivalent to about 20 percent of its gross domestic product.
- Tokyo and some major cities in Japan appeared unusually quiet on Wednesday with many stores shut and fewer people in the streets, a day after a state of emergency was declared over the new coronavirus outbreak.
- Japanese governors urged the state to compensate businesses so they can comply with requests to halt operations and cancel events, a day after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe declared a state of emergency to curb the spread of the new coronavirus.
- The Japan Sport Council said it will close to athletes two major Olympic training facilities in response to the government’s declaration of a state of emergency.
- Japan Football Association President Kozo Tashima, who has recovered after being infected with the new coronavirus, said Wednesday he hopes Japan’s state of emergency will spur athletes to put their civic duties first.
- Complaint calls over scams related to the novel coronavirus have topped 10,000 since the start of the domestic outbreak in January, the National Consumer Affairs Center of Japan said.
- China on Wednesday reported 199 new coronavirus infection cases on the mainland, 62 with symptoms and 137 without, tripling the previous day’s tally as imported cases surge.
- China lifted the months-long lockdown imposed on Wuhan, the original epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, on Wednesday, in a symbolic sign that the country’s leadership is confident in decelerating the pace of new infections.
List of shops closed in Tokyo following emergency declaration
As of 11 p.m., Tuesday, April 7 (Japan time)
- Prime Minister Shinzo Abe declared a state of emergency on Tuesday for Tokyo, Osaka and five other prefectures to curb the spread of the new coronavirus after an alarming growth in cases in urban areas.
- Trains will run as usual and daily necessities such as toilet paper will continue to be manufactured for stable supply in Japan, business operators said Tuesday, after the government declared a state of emergency to step up efforts to prevent a further escalation in the coronavirus outbreak.
- Nippon Professional Baseball is unlikely to alter its plans for a new schedule in response to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s declaration Tuesday of a state of emergency to curb the spread of the new coronavirus, NPB secretary general Atsushi Ihara said.
- Nissan Motor Co. is looking to cut over 10,000 jobs temporarily in the United States and Europe, as local production remains suspended amid the coronavirus outbreak, sources close to the matter said Tuesday.
- Now that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has declared a state of emergency to prevent the collapse of Japan’s health care systems over the coronavirus outbreak, attention will shift to whether the first-ever such measure in Japan will prove effective.
- An online discussion among Japanese twitter users has erupted over urbanites fleeing to rural areas to escape the novel coronavirus, with a local mayor even entering the fray, as large cities have seen sharp spikes in cases of COVID-19 disease in recent days.
- Japan’s Cabinet approved a largest-ever 108 trillion yen ($990 billion) stimulus package on Tuesday to help struggling households and businesses survive the impact of the new coronavirus outbreak.
Useful resources for foreign residents and visitors in Japan
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government’s COVID-19 info
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government’s hotline
– Available in English, Chinese, Korean and Japanese, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
– Available via fax for those with hearing impairments
- Japan National Tourism Organization’s “Guide for when you are feeling ill”
– Multilingual clinic/hospital search available in English, Korean, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Japanese
- JNTO’s “Japan Visitor Hotline“
– Available in English, Chinese, Korean and Japanese 24 hours a day
+81-50-3816-2787 (from overseas)
- Japan’s health ministry hotline
– Available in Japanese only, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
- World Health Organization’s “Q&A on coronaviruses“