Several South American countries that are now at the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic decided to reopen their economy despite the increase in infections, ignoring the example of Europe, where countries waited for the worst to pass.
Meanwhile, in the United States, there were concerns that widespread protests over the death of George Floyd, a black man who died after a white police officer put his knee to his neck while handcuffed on the floor, could lead to further outbreaks in a country where the virus has disproportionately affected racial minorities.
In addition, a new estimate from the Congressional Budget Office warned that damage to the world’s largest economy could amount to nearly $ 16 trillion in the next decade if the government does not work to mitigate the coup.
Experts are concerned about what is happening in South America.
“Clearly, the situation in many South American countries is far from stable. There is a rapid increase in cases and those systems are under increasing pressure, ”said Mike Ryan, executive director of the World Health Organization’s emergency program.
Some of the hardest hit cities in Brazil, including the jungle metropolis of Manaus and the coastal Rio de Janeiro, were beginning to reopen. Brazil has reported more than 526,000 cases of the virus, just behind the 1.8 million reported in the United States.
For its part, the Bolivian government has authorized the reopening of most of the country, while Venezuela has withdrawn restrictions. Ecuador’s airports resumed flights and customers returned to some shopping centers in Colombia.
Further north, Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador began the country’s return to the “new normal” on Monday with his first road trip in two months, as the nation began to withdraw part of the measures against the virus.
López Obrador said he had taken all the necessary precautions on his trip – doing 1,000 miles by road from Mexico City over the weekend, instead of traveling by plane – to promote the construction of the Maya Train, one of his flagship infrastructure projects. .
In South Korea, new cases rose on Tuesday. Areas around Seoul vetoed the meetings, and authorities urged parishioners and some health workers to avoid crowds.
The United States Congressional Budget Office released a new estimate, noting that in the decade to end in 2030, total GDP could be 15.7 trillion less than expected in January. That would mean losing 5.3% of GDP in the next decade.
After adjusting for inflation, lost output would amount to $ 7.9 trillion, according to the office, a loss of 3% of inflation-adjusted GDP.
The office described it as a “significant drop” in GDP as a result of the pandemic.
“Business closings and social distancing measures are expected to limit consumer spending, while the recent decline in energy prices is expected to severely reduce investment in the energy sector,” the director of business said in a letter. the budget office, Philip Swagel.
On the other hand, a new report indicated that at least a quarter of those killed by COVID-19 in the United States lived in residences.
The report, prepared for the governors of the United States, indicated that almost 26,000 inmates of residents have died from the virus, a figure that is only partial and that is likely to increase.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CMS and CDC) reported 60,000 cases of coronavirus among residential inmates, according to a copy of a letter to governors and a accompanying chart, which was provided to The Associated Press.
The data was based on reports received from approximately 80% of the 15,400 residences as of May 24. But some states with high residential mortality rates seemed to have a lower response rate to the survey, which was intended to serve as a first step in making regulatory changes.
“These data, these case reports across the country, clearly show that residences have been devastated by the virus,” wrote CDC Director Robert Redfield and CMS administrator Seema Verma.
Worldwide, more than 6.2 million infections have been reported, with more than 375,000 deaths, according to a count by Johns Hopkins University. The actual death toll is believed to be significantly higher, because many people died without being tested.
In the United States, protests over Floyd’s death, which occurred on May 25 in Minneapolis, have shaken cities from New York to Los Angeles, and many of the protests were not wearing face masks.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo expressed concern that protests in New York City could jeopardize the long and hard battle to contain the pandemic in one of the most affected places in the world.
“You turn on the television and you see these massive gatherings that could be infecting hundreds and hundreds of people after all we’ve done,” Cuomo said. “We have to take a minute and ask ourselves, ‘What are we doing?'”
Journalists from around the world contributed to this report.