Asia Today: Shanghai airport worker gets virus; 8,000 tested


Authorities in China’s financial hub of Shanghai have quarantined 186 people and conducted coronavirus tests on more than 8,000 after a freight handler at the city’s main international airport tested positive for the virus

No additional cases have been found, the city government said on its microblog Tuesday. It remains unclear how the 51-year-old man contracted the virus, which has largely spared the sprawling metropolis despite its dense population and strong international links.

The National Health Administration on Tuesday reported 21 additional cases brought from overseas, while 426 people remain in treatment for COVID-19, which was first detected in the central Chinese city of Wuhan late last year.

China has reported 4,634 deaths among 86,267 cases of the virus, while 788 people are currently being held in isolation for being suspected case or for testing positive without showing symptoms.

In other developments in the Asia-Pacific region:

— South Korea’s top government think tank is maintaining a grim outlook for the country’s economy this year despite an improvement in exports and says the shock unleashed by the pandemic will continue to be felt in 2021. The Korea Development Institute said Tuesday it projects the country’s economy to shrink 1.1% this year after the spread of the virus destroyed service industry jobs and cut down consumer spending. The economy would be even worse if not for robust global shipments of computer memory chips, the country’s most important export item. The industry has seen increased demand driven by personal computers and servers as the pandemic forces millions to work at home. While South Korea hasn’t seen an explosive second wave of the virus, there’s still concern over a steady rise in transmissions that experts say could get worse in the winter.


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