Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte announced on Monday that the government has locked down the entire country in an attempt to deal with the outbreak of the coronavirus, which originated in China.
“Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said the measures, which come into effect on Tuesday, were necessary to defend the most fragile members of the community,” the BBC reported. “He added that the best thing for the citizens of Italy was to stay at home. Italy’s coronavirus death toll jumped on Monday by 97 to 463. It is the worst-hit country after China.”
Tells Italians to stay at home, to think of the common good, to play their part to combat #Coronavirus. Cancels all sports matches across the country.
— Mark Lowen (@marklowen) March 9, 2020
Conte said that everyone should stay “at home” and that the country decided that the expanded measures needed to be done “immediately.”
The Wall Street Journal highlighted some of the economic impacts of the expanded quarantine:
The airline Alitalia canceled all service into and out of Malpensa, one of Italy’s busiest airports, which serves Milan and the country’s northwest. Italy’s national carrier is only offering a limited number of domestic flights from Linate, Milan’s smaller airport. On Monday morning, more than two-thirds of flights from Linate had been canceled, although easyJet flights to London and Paris departed.
Sports-car maker Ferrari, which has its headquarters and only factory in the quarantined province of Modena, said it is operating normally. Other manufacturers in the quarantined areas said they were also operating, although they had taken new precautions against the virus, such as keeping workers further apart than normal, and placing bottles of hand sanitizer throughout their factories.
Conte said that the country was committing to a massive spending increase to wipe out the negative impacts that the coronavirus was having on the country.
“We certainly won’t stop here,” Conte said. “We will have to use massive shock therapy.”
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