Greek authorities are on high alert following the alarming outbreak of the coronavirus in Italy where as of Tuesday morning 229 cases and seven deaths have been recorded. Infectious disease experts warn that the possibility of an outbreak in the country has increased, due to its geographical proximity to Italy.
The World Health Organization has said the world should do more to prepare for a possible coronavirus pandemic. The WHO said it was too early to call the outbreak a pandemic but countries should be “in a phase of preparedness”.
10:40: The Greek Olympic Committee announced that it has discussed with the government alternative plans for the Olympic Flame lighting ceremony in March if there is a coronavirus outbreak. “We are in contact with the Crisis Committee and the Ministry of Health so that there is a plan ready for what needs to be done in case there are outbreaks in our country,” committee president Spyros Capralos said.
10:35: Two more Iranians infected with coronavirus have died, media website Eghtesad online said on Tuesday, taking the death toll to 14 – the highest tally of deaths outside China.
10:30: Greek Reporter has learned that at least two major Airline companies in the US to discuss the option of suspending all or some flights to the European Union, beginning from Sunday, March 1.
09:55: Athens University professor and infectious disease expert Dimitris Tsiodras said the public should remain calm, noting that the virus remains a mild disease, which in most case (85 percent) behaves like a simple cold.
09:30: The number of novel coronavirus cases in south Korea is approaching 900 as the president Moon Jae-in said the outbreak is “very grave”. The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) confirmed 60 new cases in its morning update – after three days of triple-digit increases – taking the tally to 893, the largest national total anywhere outside China.
09:00: China’s authorities announced on Tuesday that the doth toll is 2,663 deaths among 77,658 cases, mostly in the central province of Hubei.
08:30: Greek cruise industry insiders are increasingly alarmed about the effect of the coronavirus epidemic on the tourist industry. Speaking to Greek Reporter, Theodoros Kontes, the President of the Union of Greek Cruise Ship Owners, says that earlier forecasts showing a 7-8 percent increase in cruise passengers to Greece for the year 2020 are now unlikely. “We would be lucky if we maintain last year’s numbers. People are scared to travel,” he notes.
08:15: The Milan stock exchange’s FTSE Mib index closed 5.4% down on 23,427 points on Monday amid fears of the economic impact of the coronavirus emergency. Some 30 billion euros of share value went up in smoke.