Governments should deploy "substantial" stimulus and international coordination to counteract the economic impact of the spreading coronavirus epidemic, the International Monetary Fund's chief economist reportedly said on March 9. This comes as the deadly infection has killed nearly 3,882 and infected over 1,11,381people, international media reported.
Gita Gopinath speaking to international media said that given the "acute shocks" caused to economies, consumers and businesses, policymakers will need to implement substantial targeted fiscal, monetary, and financial market measures to help affected households and businesses. She further said that the new measures would include cash transfer, wage subsidies and tax reliefs, as well as interest rate cuts and financial market supports by central banks. She also said that given the international economic linkages, the argument for a coordinated and international response was clear.
Meanwhile, Iran has decided on temporarily releasing prisoner as cases surged in the nation. The country's courts on March 9 granted furlough to eligible inmates as a part of its measures to contain the spread on COVID-19, international media reported citing judiciary chief Hojatoleslam Ebrahim Raeisi. Raeisi while talking to an Iranian news agency revealed that the Iranian courts have released approximately 70,000 prisoners. He also said that all the prisoners with underlying illnesses had been granted leave.
This comes as the number of infected cases surged to 7,161 on March 9. Meanwhile, the deadly virus has reportedly killed over 237 people across the Shiite nation. On March 3, Iran announced that it would release more than 54,000 prisoners in an attempt to prevent the virus spread, an Iranian news agency citing judiciary spokesman Gholamhossein Esmaili reported.
The head of Iran's Crisis Management Organisation, Esmaeel Najjar, has reportedly contracted the novel coronavirus. According to the news agency ISNA, Najjar was discharged from the hospital and is self-quarantined at his home. Iran already has 6,566 confirmed coronavirus cases and the deadly virus has also claimed more than 190 lives in the country.