“To the extent not covered by any existing insurance, indemnity or compensation schemes, the Government of the Republic of Singapore will indemnify anything done or omitted to be done in good faith and with reasonable care by all medical practitioners and healthcare workers, in the discharge or purported discharge of their functions and duties in relation to WOG efforts to prevent and reduce the spread of COVID-19.”
Prohibition of outdoor movement in Seychelles extended to May 4 The Seychelles Health Authority said on Thursday that it is maintaining the extension of the prohibition of outdoor movement until May 4, four days longer than the April 30 date previously announced. Public Health Commissioner Jude Gedeon said during a weekly press conference that the additional days will ensure more time for active surveillance and monitoring.
Ramaphosa announces gradual easing of Covid-19 lockdown in South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa announced an easing of the nationwide lockdown in response to the Covid-19 outbreak in South Africa. He said a phased reopening of the economy will begin on May 1. Ramaphosa noted that although a lockdown remains the most effective way to limit the spread of the virus, the prosperity of South Africans would be at risk with a continued lockdown. “Nationwide lockdown cannot be sustained indefinitely,” he said. “People need to eat, earn a living and companies need to be able to produce and trade, need to generate revenue and keep people employed.”
Dubai eases movement restrictions, allows malls and offices to partially reopen Dubai has announced that movement restrictions will be eased in the emirate, with malls and offices allowed to partially reopen provided they adhere to certain precautionary measures. The decision will be implemented from Friday, April 24, the Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management announced. The move, which coincides with the start of Ramadan follows a “careful assessment of the current situation and analysis of reports from various authorities working to combat the pandemic”, the committee said.
U.S. House passes COVID-19 relief package to aid small businesses, hospitals, testing The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday passed a 484-billion-dollar relief package to boost funding for small businesses, hospitals and coronavirus testing. The package will provide more than 310 billion dollars in additional funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to boost small business lending, as well as 75 billion dollars for hospitals and 25 billion dollars for virus testing.
Covid-19 reprieve: Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City ( HCMC) to end social distancing with variations Hanoi and HCMC, in a 'lower risk' classification now, have been allowed to end their social distancing campaigns Thursday. Both cities will begin implementing Directive 15 that allows more relaxed restrictions than Directive 16, which guided the social distancing campaign. With a couple of districts still having active Covid-19 patients, Hanoi will have more restrictions in place than Ho Chi Minh City.
Indonesia Extends Partial Lockdown in Capital to Curb Virus Indonesia extended stringent social distancing rules in Jakarta, home to more than 10 million people, as the capital region continued to remain the epicenter of infections in the Southeast Asian nation. The large-scale social distancing measures, which include a ban on gatherings of more than five people, limited public transport services and mandatory work-from-home, were extended to May 22, Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan said.
Covid-19 circuit breaker to be extended by one month to June 1: PM Lee The circuit breaker to choke off the spread of the coronavirus will be extended by another month to June 1, and existing measures will be tightened until May 4, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong in his fourth national address on the situation. This means that more workplaces will be closed to further reduce the number of workers keeping essential services going. Some hot spots, such as popular wet markets, remain a problem, as large groups of people continue to congregate there, Mr Lee said. While he noted that the circuit breaker measures have been working, he stressed that Singapore cannot be complacent. He said the number of unlinked cases has not come down, which suggests a "hidden reservoir" of cases in the community.
G 20 agrees on debt relief for poorest countries With the Global economy plunged into the worst recession in a century, the G 20 finance Ministers and central bankers endorsed “a time bound suspension of debt service payments for the poorest countries” as they struggle to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.
Korean Government add second supplementary emergency budget Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun, Economy and Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki and the heads of other relevant ministries confirmed the extra budget in an extraordinary Cabinet meeting at Government Complex-Sejong. The additional budget is part of a one-time temporary measure focused on the emergency relief package and was made possible by restructuring spending and borrowing without issuing public bonds.
Indian Embassy in Sweden: Update on Latvia & Sweden The Indian Embassy in Sweden has shared the latest update of COVID-19 in Latvia & Sweden. The Government decided to extend the temporary entry ban to the EU via Sweden until 15 May. The decision was taken following a recommendation of the European Commission. The temporary entry ban began to apply on 19 March and initially applied for 30 days. Swedish citizens are not affected by the entry ban. Nor does the entry ban prevent travel within the
Singapore Media Sector gets a boost amidst COVID-19 The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) introduced a series of initiatives to help the local media sector tide over COVID-19. Complementing the broad-based measures announced by the Finance Minister in the Unity, Resilience and Solidarity Budgets, these latest initiatives will help media companies benefit from more production project opportunities and reduced operating costs, as well as assist media professionals and freelancers build up their resilience through training and upskilling. These are part of the ongoing national efforts to protect jobs and livelihoods.
Notice on Suspension of Short-term Visas of Foreigner entering the Republic of Korea. The Government of the Republic of Korea has suspended all Short-Term Visas (for less than 90 days) issued to foreign nationals starting from April 13, 2020. All foreign holders of visa type would need to reapply for their visas at the Embassy. However, short term employment (C-4 type visa) and long-term visa (employment, investment, etc) holders are exempted. Visa Advisory for Indian Nationals in Brazil The Federal Police of Brazil has informed that the visas of foreign nationals, which were valid as on 16.03.2020, are deemed to be extended automatically in view of the public health emergency in Brazil due to COVID-19 situation.
France to reallocate Africa aid money for fight against coronavirus
France will reallocate almost €1.2bn of African development aid to the fight against coronavirus as part of President Emmanuel Macron’s effort to focus international attention on the health and economic impact of the pandemic on the continent.
• Lockdown extended by two weeks as SA’s Covid-19 cases increase to 1934 President Cyril Ramaphosa has extended the lockdown period by two weeks as the number of confirmed Covid-19 cases increased to 1934 on Thursday.
• South African leaders take pay cuts for COVID-19 fund South Africa’s president and his cabinet will take a 33% pay cut for the next three months to contribute to a fund to help the nation cope with the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Covid-19: Botswana Parliament endorses 6-month state of emergency The threat of being infected with the Covid-19 coronavirus did little to deter Botswana’s Members of Parliament – all of whom were quarantined – as the House endorsed a six-month state of emergency declaration. The state of emergency could see the landlocked diamond-rich country facing an extended and much stricter lockdown and preventative measures against the spread of the deadly virus. This comes after a 28 day “extreme lockdown” which kicked in last Friday. The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) extends Digital Bank Assessment Period in view of COVID-19 pandemic. The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said it has extended the assessment period for approving digital bank licenses, citing the global escalation of the COVID-19 pandemic. Successful applicants will be informed in the second half of this year instead of in June, as originally intended, the central bank said on Thursday.
Singapore issues COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Act 2020 Under the COVID-19 (Temporary Measures) Bill, the Government has included provisions to provide the legal basis in order to enforce the enhanced safe distancing measures. These are temporary measures specific to the COVID-19 situation we are facing currently. The Bill will be valid for six months, Law and Home Affairs Minister K Shanmugam had said earlier, with the Minister for Law given power to extend it for up to a year. Mr Gan highlighted that the circuit breaker measures designed to limit the spread of COVID-19 will be imposed until May 4.
COVID-19: Additional safe distancing measures implemented on public transport Additional safe distancing measures are being implemented on public transport networks as Singapore steps up efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19. Safe distancing stickers will be progressively rolled out on all trains, train stations, buses, bus stops and bus interchanges to mark out spaces and seats that should be avoided by commuters
Bahrain to support 100,000 private sector salaries with $570m relief initiative The Kingdom of Bahrain is to support the wages of 100,000 of its citizens working in the private sector with a $570 million relief initiative covering April, May and June 2020. Bahrain’s Minister of Labor and Social Development, Jamil Humaidan, said the government guarantee is part of liquidity for the private sector to help mitigate the social and economic impacts of the current global health crisis. The assistance will also maintain the growth of the private sector and enhance its vital role in supporting the national economy
Dubai Economy Announces Closure of All Commercial Sectors until 18 April Dubai Economy announced that all commercial sectors will remain closed until the end of the National Disinfection Program on 18 April. The exempted sectors, however, will operate as usual. The decision comes in line with the preventive measures to limit the spread of Corona Virus (Covid-19).
Algeria Declares Nationwide Lockdown Algerian Government on Saturday declared a nationwide lockdown to slow down the spread of COVID-19, which has claimed 130 lives in the country. The Algerian government said in a statement that a full lockdown has been maintained in the epicenter of the novel coronavirus outbreak, the province of Blida. Meanwhile, in nine provinces including Algiers a partial lockdown will continue from 3 p.m. to 7 a.m., the statement added.
COVID-19: Disinfection drive extended to 24 hours in Dubai Strict measures have been put in place to restrict movement in Dubai to curb spread of coronavirus. The measures will be effective for a period of two weeks, subject to renewal. Individuals will not be allowed to leave the house, except for essential purposes or if they are working in vital sectors exempted from the restrictions. All people leaving home should wear a mask, gloves and ensure they keep a safe distance from others
Ministry of Health, Singapore: Circuit Breaker to minimize further spread of COVID-19 Ministry of Health, Singapore in its press release has stated that the Multi-Ministry Taskforce will be implementing an elevated set of safe distancing measures, as a circuit breaker to pre-empt the trend of increasing local transmission of COVID-19. There will be significant reduction in movements and interactions in public and private places, full home-based learning for schools and closure of most physical workplace premises, except for those providing essential services and in selected economic sectors which are critical for local and the global supply chains.
Government of the Kingdom of Eswatini: Guidelines for all Industries The Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Trade has released guidelines for all industries in the country, in consultation with the business community, has recommended that industries as advised by World Health Organization (WHO) and Ministry of Health guidelines shall continue to operate.
The Ministry of Industry and Trade decided to exclude soap bars, shampoo, and tissue paper in the form of jumbo rolls "production requirements" from Resolution 187 of 2020 to stop the export of masks and protective supplies.
The Ministry of Health allocated two hotlines to provide psychological support for citizens staying at home as part of the precautionary measures taken by the State to counter the spread of the deadly coronavirus.
Malawi: State of disaster in place due to COVID-19 Malawi Government has declared state of disaster due to COVID-19 pandemic. Authorities have banned public gatherings of more than 100 people, which applies to weddings, funerals, religious congregations, rallies, and government meetings. Security forces have been deployed to enforce the restrictions.
Zimbabwe welcomes UN call for sanctions removal Government has welcomed recent calls by top United Nations officials for the removal of sanctions on Zimbabwe and other countries in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic that is ravaging the world. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet last week called on the international community, principally the US, to roll back sanctions imposed on many countries, Zimbabwe being one of them.
To address the situation of the cross-border and seasonal workers performing essential services, EU Commission has issued guidelines for free movement of workers who need to cross borders in order to reach their place of work.
The Government announced allocation of a monthly stipend, as of March 15, for workers forced to suspend their income-generating activities due to the national lockdown. A guarantee program was also launched to protect companies with a deteriorated cash flow from bankruptcy amid the novel coronavirus crisis.
Viet Nam will begin nationwide social distancing from April 1, with the principle of going into self-isolation, as per the latest directive signed by PM Nguyen Xuan Phuc. Citizens are told to stay at home to go out in case of extreme necessity, such as buying food, medicine; emergencies; working at factories / production establishments in essential services and goods that are not subject to provisional closure; and other emergency cases.
National Wages Council 2020/2021 Guidelines: Ministry of Manpower, Singapore The National Wages Council convened in March 2020 to formulate wage guidelines for the period from 1 April 2020 to 30 June 2021. These 2020/2021 guidelines will supersede the 2019/2020 guidelines with effect from 1 April 2020. The National Wages Council has also called on employers, unions & workers, and the Government to stay united and work together, to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 and position Singapore for eventual recovery.
Monetary Authority of Singapore: Monetary Policy Statement- April 2020 This monetary policy stance reflects the primary role of fiscal policy in mitigating the economic impact of COVID-19. The Resilience Budget announced on 26 March, and the earlier Unity Budget, will help to preserve jobs, skills and firms’ know-how and capabilities. MAS’ money market operations will at the same time provide sufficient liquidity to the financial system. Monetary policy will complement these efforts and ensure price stability over the medium term.
Greek Government extends COVID-19 relief benefits Greece’s New Democracy government is extending financial aid to workers and businesses hit hard by a lockdown aimed at preventing the spread of the COVID-19 virus and said the self-employed would also be helped. Finance Minister Christos Staikouras said an 800-million euro ($886.51 million) package of aid would be given to 1.7 million workers and that businesses won’t have to pay debts to the state for four months, reported Kathimerini.
Bahrain response to Coronavirus: Embassy of Bahrain Embassy of Bahrain, shared highlights on the Kingdom of Bahrain’s response to Coronavirus. These highlights includes Royal Directives, measures taken in various sectors like Heath, Education, Public and Private Institution, Economic and precautionary measures.
Criteria for Current Account Transactions in View of the Growing Impact of COVID-19: The Bank of Japan The Bank of Japan has set that financial institutions that are subject to the capital buffer and liquidity coverage ratio (LCR) requirements under applicable laws and regulations should satisfy these requirements under the rules and criteria for the Bank's operations. These include the criteria for eligibility to hold current accounts at the Bank and to have access to its lending facilities, the criteria for selecting counterparties for the Bank's market operations, and the conditions for eligible counterparties for the Complementary Lending Facility. Dubai Free Zones Economic Stimulus Under the directives of Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai, Dubai Free Zones has announced several measures as part of the economic stimulus package. These include postponement of rent payments for up to 6 months, Facilitating financial payments through easy instalments on a monthly basis, refunding various insurance and guarantees claims, allowing intra-corporate transfer of labour between companies and sectors operating in the free zones and cancellation of number of penalties for companies and individuals.
Iraq Cabinet discusses measures to contain COVID-19 In its review meeting on impact of restrictions to contain COVID-19, Iraqi Cabinet decided to extend the curfew to 11 April 2020 in all regions, authorized the Minister of Health to allow Health professionals, who are at their age of retirement, to continue their posts and directed all Ministries, public bodies, local authorities to use their financials and other resources to support the Crisis Cell and Ministry of Health.
“New measures to strengthen the border measures”:Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan “New measures to strengthen border measures” were decided at the 23rd Meeting of the Novel Coronavirus Response Headquarters. These measures were decided, amidst the further spreading of coronavirus in foreign countries, to take proactive measures including border controls, aligning with measures taken by foreign countries, in order to prevent the further spread of infections.
Indonesia- Government plans to issue recovery debt to help the Business world amid COVID-19 pandemic. The government plans to issue recovery bonds or recovery bonds to help business continuity as a scenario so that the business sector is not affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. The recovery bonds will later be issued to Bank Indonesia or to the private sector which still has liquidity. Indonesia: Press release on import of medical equipment The Indonesian Trade Ministry has issued a regulation to temporarily do away with guidelines for importing protective gear and medical equipment to reverse the shortages of such items used to treat COVID-19 patients and prevent further spread. The Ministry said that importers would no longer need surveyors reports from originating countries or ports until June 30. Shipment will now only need a bill of lading.
Singapore announces Supplementary “Resilience Budget” in response to COVID-19 pandemic. Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Mr Heng Swee Keat announced the Supplementary “Resilience” Budget. This is further to the Unity budget that was announced 5 weeks ago to support workers, businesses and households in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. To meet these challenging times, Singapore has provided a $48 BILLION RESILIENCE BUDGET to support Singaporeans and businesses.
Republic of Guinea issues travel advisory The Republic of Guinea issued an advisory which suspends commercial flights from affected countries, except cargo flights, suspension of issuance of visas, movement of people to and fro from affected countries, etc.
Japan’s Border Enforcement Measures Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan introduced Border Enforcement Measures to prevent the spread of novel coronavirus. These include denial of permission to land, visa restrictions and Quarantine at entry point.
Singapore travel advisory Singapore in its updated travel advisory and travel restrictions mentions mandatory submission of health declaration before proceeding with immigration clearance. The Government is implementing enhanced precautions for UK / US returnees.
Media Briefing by Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, South Africa Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, South Africa briefed the media on various interventions made by the country which was stated by the Hon’ble President Cyril Ramaophosa’s address to the nation. He further mentioned that more interventions and programmes would be finalised over the next few days.
Tunisia update on COVID-19 Tunisia suspended all work at all administrative state and public institutions until April 4 to limit the spread of coronavirus. institutions and public servants included in the new measure to abide by the rules of comprehensive quarantine and only leave their homes when it is required by their concerned departments, provided that any work that can be done remotely proceeds as such.
Sudan update on COVID-19 Sudan has ordered the closure of all its borders due to pandemic fears. One person has died and two cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed.
South Sudan update on COVID-19 The newly formed transitional government of national unity has banned all international flights coming into or going out of the country due to fears of Coronavirus. The government also banned public buses from neighbouring countries.
Public Health Advisory to the citizens of Nigeria on Coronavirus disease The Federal Ministry of Health, through the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), has activated a national Emergency Operations Centre at the highest level and is leading the national response. A National Rapid Response Team has been deployed to support affected State Governments with response activities.
Indonesia closes borders over Covid-19 At midnight of 19 March 2020, Indonesia closed its borders to foreign visitors and prohibited citizens from leaving the country for a month due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
New Zealand Advice on overseas travel New Zealand Government has advised its citizens not to travel overseas at this time due to the outbreak of COVID-19, associated health risks and travel restrictions.
Ban on Entry into Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste. The Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste has put a temporary ban on the entry of foreign nationals of 147 countries, affected by the COVID-19, including India, in response to the declaration of the COVID 19 as pandemic by WHO. The order takes effect from March18, 2020 and will be subject to four weeks periodical review.
Advisory issued by the South African Government President Cyril Ramaphosa announced a ‘national state of disaster’ to enable the government to introduce measures to combat the spread of Covid-19 within South Africa that includes travel to South Africa and other advisories like functioning of Education institutions, healthcare institutions and other businesses.
Indonesia issues travel restrictions The Foreign Ministry of Indonesia has announced travel restrictions including suspension of its visa exemption policy for all countries for one month and expand restrictions for people with a history of travel to some of the world's countries hardest hit by the coronavirus in its efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the archipelago.
The Mantosh Sondhi Centre 23, Institutional Area, Lodi Road, New Delhi - 110 003, India