How South Korea turned an urban planning system into a virus tracking database By Reuters

© Reuters. South Korea’s Gyeonggi Province Governor Lee Jae-myung speaks during an interview with Reuters in Seuwon


By Hyonhee Shin, Hyunjoo Jin and Josh Smith

SEOUL (Reuters) – When a man in Seoul tested positive for the new coronavirus in May, South Korean authorities were able to confirm his wide-ranging movements in and outside the city in minutes, including five bars and clubs he visited on a recent night out.

The fast response – well ahead of many other countries facing outbreaks – was the result of merging South Korea’s already advanced methods of collecting information and tracking the virus into a new data sharing system that patches together cellphone location data and credit card records.

The Epidemic Investigation Support System (EISS), introduced in late March, effectively removed technological barriers to sharing that information between authorities, by building on the country’s ‘Smart City’ data system.

That platform was

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China-backed AIIB approves $250 million loan for Bangladesh’s COVID-19 response By Reuters

© Reuters. People wait in the queue outside of a coronavirus testing center amid concerns over coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Dhaka

BEIJING (Reuters) – Beijing-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) said on Thursday it had approved a $250 million loan to Bangladesh to help the country cope with the coronavirus pandemic.

The project, which will be cofinanced by the Asian Development Bank, is intended to help Bangladesh’s government with budget support to help the country’s most vulnerable, according to a statement. It is intended to strengthen social safety nets and mitigate the effects of job losses in small and medium sized companies and the informal economy.

“Bangladesh is extremely vulnerable to the COVID-19 virus given that it has one of the highest population densities in the world,” said the release.

The loan is part of a $10 billion funding facility the AIIB has announced to help public and private

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Fujifilm shares fall after report Avigan not showing clear efficacy in some coronavirus trials By Reuters

© Reuters.

TOKYO (Reuters) – Shares of Fujifilm Holdings Corp (T:) fell on Wednesday after Kyodo news reported that so far there has been no clear evidence of efficacy for its drug Avigan in treating the novel coronavirus in some clinical trials.

The data reported to Japan’s health ministry by hospitals treating people showing mild or no symptoms raises doubts about whether the drug can be approved by the end of this month as sought by Japan’s government, the report said, citing unidentified sources.

The government has not changed its plans to promptly seek approval for Avigan if its efficacy and safety can be confirmed, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said on Wednesday.

Fujifilm spokeswoman Kana Matsumoto said the company was not involved in the clinical research conducted mainly at Fujita Health University or other observational studies.

“Fujifilm is not aware of, nor in a position to comment on the

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New Zealand reports no new coronavirus cases for second straight day By Reuters

© Reuters. New Zealand eases regulations implemented to curb the spread of coronavirus disease in Auckland

SYDNEY (Reuters) – New Zealand recorded no new coronavirus cases for the second straight day on Tuesday, but authorities said it was premature to discuss moving the country to “level one” in its scale of alert.

The Pacific nation, home to more than 5 million, moved to “level 2” last week, allowing cafes, shops and restaurants to reopen under strict social distancing rules.

“We are only just into alert level two; we still need to settle into the full alert level two parameters,” Director-General of Health Ashley Bloomfield told a news conference in Wellington.

Bloomfield said there was “still a long way to go” for the country to move into alert level one, which means the virus has been contained in the country.

“Even at this point, when we got zero or no cases

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Subaru full-year profit rises 16{403cc565fa3cc21393751b9dcd44ef172eb53ec18650f129cafdd18bff67f4a7} but uncertain about coronavirus impact By Reuters

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The 2020 Subaru Outback is revealed at the 2019 New York International Auto Show in New York City

TOKYO (Reuters) – Subaru Corp (T:) on Monday posted a 15.7{403cc565fa3cc21393751b9dcd44ef172eb53ec18650f129cafdd18bff67f4a7} rise in annual operating profit in the year that ended in March as it recovered from production delays and product recalls last year, but warned of uncertainties from the coronavirus outbreak this year.

Profit was 210.3 billion yen ($1.96 billion) for the year just ended, up from 181.7 billion yen a year ago. It exceeded a consensus estimate of 204.7 billion yen profit drawn from 17 analysts polled by Refinitiv.

Subaru declined to give an earnings forecast for the current business year, citing uncertainties about the longer term impact of the coronavirus outbreak on its operations and sales.

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NZ gives sports sector $157 million boost to get through COVID-19 By Reuters

© Reuters. New Zealand’s Finance Minister Grant Robertson speaks during a media conference in Wellington

WELLINGTON (Reuters) – New Zealand’s struggling sports sector has received a NZ$265 million ($157 million) injection from the government to help it mitigate some of the worst financial effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, Sports Minister Grant Robertson said on Sunday.

Robertson, who is also New Zealand’s finance minister and delivered the national budget on Thursday, said funding and revenue had dried up for nearly all sports organisations and that they were under “immense strain”.

“We are providing the support needed to sports at all levels to remain viable, get stronger and adapt,” Robertson said in the post-budget statement.

“We have also seen many of our professional sports and athletes struggle as competitions have been cancelled or suspended. Budget 2020 will provide some assistance, so they can keep competing.”

The funding would be spread over four

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