Here are the latest updates from Japan and beyond on the coronavirus outbreak:
As of 9:30 p.m., Saturday, March 21 (Japan time)
- Japan plans to implement corporate tax refunds for companies that have been forced to incur losses due to the outbreak of the new coronavirus, a government source said Saturday.
- Myanmar still claims to have avoided the coronavirus pandemic despite being surrounded by three countries battling the virus, including China where the outbreak started.
- Bangkok's metropolitan authority on Saturday ordered the closure of shopping malls and entertainment facilities in the capital to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.
- Holding the Tokyo Olympics on schedule as the local organizing committee and the International Olympic Committee advocate is "irresponsible," The Washington Post's editorial board wrote in a column released Friday.
- Norway's Olympic committee said Friday it has asked the International Olympic Committee not to hold this summer's Tokyo Olympics until the new coronavirus pandemic is under control.
- The total number of people who have been infected with the new coronavirus in Japan, excluding those who contracted it aboard a cruise ship, topped 1,000 on Friday
- Japanese and U.S. foreign ministers on Friday agreed to closely cooperate in dealing with the coronavirus outbreak, recognizing the need to enact border controls for a certain period of time to address the global health crisis
- Nepal said Friday it will suspend all international flights as a precautionary measure against the new coronavirus that has still left the Asian country largely untouched
As of 10:45 p.m., Friday, March 20 (Japan time)
- Some amusement park operators in Japan said Friday they will resume some of their operations that were temporarily suspended due to the outbreak of the new coronavirus.
- South Korea's Health and Welfare Ministry highlighted the need for cooperation with Japan and China to overcome the rapidly spreading new coronavirus, during a briefing with major foreign news agencies, including Kyodo News, on Friday.
- Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Friday the government will draw up plans to reopen schools in Japan's new academic year from April but did not budge over his cautious approach to holding large events to stem a surge in coronavirus infections.
- International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach said the IOC is "considering different scenarios" for this summer's Tokyo Games amid the outbreak of the new coronavirus, The New York Times reported Thursday.
- The State Department on Thursday advised Americans to avoid all international travel, raising its global health warning to the highest level of 4 amid the worldwide spread of the new coronavirus.
- Police in Wuhan, the Chinese city hit hard by the new coronavirus, decided to revoke a reprimand issued against local doctor Li Wenliang who died after warning about the virus early in its outbreak.
- A Japanese government panel of medical experts said schools can reopen in areas without new confirmed cases of coronavirus infections, proposing to relax the current nationwide approach to pre-empt a further spread.
- The number of deaths in Italy from the new coronavirus has risen to 3,405, the Italian government said, surpassing for the first time that of mainland China where COVID-19 was initially reported.
- The State Department urged Americans to avoid all international travel, raising its global health advisory by one notch to the highest level of 4 amid concerns over the spread of the new coronavirus.
Useful resources for foreign residents and visitors in Japan
- 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)
- 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's health ministry hotline
- Available in Japanese only, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
- World Health Organization's "Q&A on coronaviruses"
(A man wearing goggles and a mask is pictured at a supermarket in Beijing on March 19, 2020, amid continued worries about the new coronavirus)