WHO says China's virus is now a global emergency

SHANGHAI/BEIJING: The United States provoked the wrath of China with a travel warning on Friday while businesses struggled with supply problems due to the epidemic that killed 213 people and a global emergency was declared. Russia, Britain, Sweden and Italy reported their first cases, Rome declaring its own national emergency while seeking to rebuild the itinerary of two infected Chinese tourists.

Do not travel to China because of a new coronavirus identified for the first time, the US state department said, raising the warning for China to the same level as Afghanistan and Iraq. On Friday, Delta Air Lines, United airlines and American Airlines said they are suspending all services to mainland China.

Beijing, which has just begun to repair trade ties with the United States, described the measure as truly bad, given that the World Health Organization praised its containment efforts and did not recommend curbing travel or trade. WHO urged countries to avoid travel restrictions, but shortly thereafter, the United States did the opposite, the Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said. It is really bad.

Japan also advised citizens to postpone non-urgent trips to China, while Bahrain recommended not to travel to any country affected by the virus, and Iran urged banning all travelers from China. With the inevitable consequences for the world's number 2 economy, global stocks were heading for their biggest weekly losses since August on Friday, and the oil and metal markets showed even more brutal damage. The outbreak could reverberate worldwide, Moody's said.

In the latest impact for large corporations, South Korea's Hyundai Motor said it planned to stop the production of a sports vehicle this weekend to deal with a supply disruption caused by the outbreak. Appliance manufacturer Electrolux issued a similar warning. And French car manufacturer PSA Peugeot Citroen said its three plants in Wuhan will remain closed until mid-February.

After waiting while the crisis was growing, The OMS He said Thursday that the epidemic in China, which originated from animals in Wuhan City, constituted a health emergency of international concern. The head of the Wuhan Communist Party said the city should have acted before to contain the virus. The number of confirmed cases has increased more than 9,800. More than 130 cases have been reported in at least 25 other countries and regions.

WHO has reported at least eight cases of transmission from humans to humans in four countries: the United States, Germany, Japan and Vietnam . Thailand said it also had that case.

Chinese statistics show that slightly more than 2% of infected people have died, suggesting that the virus is less deadly than the 2002-2003 SARS outbreak. But economists fear that its impact may be greater than the SARS, which killed about 800 people at an estimated cost of $ 33 billion for the global economy, since China's share in the world economy is now much greater.