North Korea’s dictator leader Kim Jong Un has lauded the efforts of the ruling Workers’ Party to contain the novel coronavirus. “We have thoroughly prevented the inroad of the malignant virus, despite the worldwide health crisis,” Kim said in a politburo meeting. He also warned against the “hasty” relaxation of anti-coronavirus measures. Experts think the North will continue to keep its borders closed for a long time.
Zara-owner Inditex SA said it is permanently closing 1,200 stores, 16% of its global outlets and will pivot more aggressively toward selling online, as the fast-fashion giant maps out its post-pandemic future. Many of the world’s major economies start to reopen, global retailers like Inditex are throwing open the doors to their stores again, hoping demand and foot traffic will return after lockdown.
Harry Potter author JK Rowling revealed on Wednesday that she is a survivor of domestic abuse and sexual assault. The celebrated British writer said in a blog post that she was disclosing the information to give context to her controversial past comments about transgender women. “This isn’t because I’m ashamed those things happened to me, but because they’re traumatic to revisit and remember,” Rowling said.
The Jammu and Kashmir government, in its new media policy, announced that it will monitor content published in newspapers and other forms of media and decide what is “fake”, “anti-social” or “anti-national” news. Any news inciting hatred or disturbing communal harmony shall be proceeded against under IPC and Cyber laws, the policy states.
The global economy will contract at least six percent this year before bouncing back with 5.2 percent growth in 2021 if the coronavirus outbreak is kept under control, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) said Wednesday, warning that recovery will be “slow and uncertain.”
Updating its outlook, the OECD forecast that if a second wave of contagion happen later in the year, world economic output could shrink by as much as 7.6 percent in 2020, which would be followed in 2021 by GDP growth of between 2.8 and 5.2 percent.
“By the end of 2021, the loss of income exceeds that of any previous recession over the last 100 years outside wartime, with dire and long-lasting consequences for people, firms and governments,” the Paris-based policy forum said in its latest outlook.
With crisis responses set to shape economic and social prospects for the coming decade, it urged governments not to shy away from debt-financed spending to support low-paid workers and investment.
“Ultra-accommodative monetary policies and higher public debt are necessary and will be accepted as long as economic activity and inflation are depressed, and unemployment is high,” OECD chief economist Laurence Boone said.
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