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COVID-19: Japan Lifts Its State Of Emergency In Most Regions Except Tokyo

Japan reportedly waived off state of emergency across several parts of the country on May 14 but the capital city of Tokyo will remain under restrictions.


Japan reportedly waived off state of emergency across several parts of the country on May 14 but the capital city of Tokyo will remain under restrictions until there is a convincing containment of the coronavirus. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe reportedly held a press conference on May 14 where he announced the lifting of the emergency in 39 of Japan's 47 prefectures. According to the international media reports, Japan declared a nationwide state of emergency about a month ago and urged people to maintain social distancing measures to curb the spread of coronavirus. Japan is the third-largest economy in the world and is badly hit by the coronavirus pandemic. 

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Companies incur loss

At least 141 Japanese companies have been pushed to bankruptcy since February due to the novel coronavirus, with more to get impacted towards the end of the month, according to a report released by Tokyo Shoko Research (TSR). Mostly smaller companies, related to tourism, hospitality, and restaurant business witnessed a decline of up to 80 percent profits as they struggled to survive in the face of the unpredictable impact of the pandemic. In a statement released for the fiscal year, the TSR estimated a total of 743 companies that went bankrupt in April, of which 71 were virus-related, compared to 645 in April last year, as per reports. Further, most of these small-scale businesses had difficulties in raising funds due to labour shortages and an increase of the consumption tax last year, the statement read. The coronavirus pandemic further enhanced their struggle.

READ: Coronavirus Pushes 140 Companies To Bankruptcy, 2 Million Workers Could Lose Jobs In Japan

As the world faces the biggest crisis in the global economy, Japanese companies incurred losses that amount to over ¥50 trillion in just one month while the national state of emergency is in effect, and businesses remained shut in the country, as per a local report. The aggregate net sales of 1.3 million companies nationwide, including small- and mid-sized businesses, totalled to ¥1.52 quadrillion in the year 2018, chief economist at Okasan Securities, Nobuyasu Atago estimated while speaking at a press conference. However, due to a sudden contraction of demand, the likes of which was not even witnessed during the economic crises in Japan’s history, several companies have now gone bankrupt, he added.  
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Image credits: AP

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