• This daily round-up brings you a selection of the latest news updates on the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, as well as tips and tools to help you stay informed and protected.
  • Top stories: Stocks stutter, mask mandating, and air freight angst.

1. How COVID-19 is affecting the globe

  • Confirmed coronavirus cases have now surpassed 8.4 million worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University. More than 453,000 people have died from the virus, while over 4.1 million are known to have recovered.
  • Mexico's health ministry reported a record number of confirmed cases yesterday - 5,662. There have been a total of 165,455 confirmed cases and 19,747 deaths in the country.
  • Japan has lifted all domestic travel restrictions. “I would like people, while observing social distancing, to go out on sightseeing trips. We would like you to make an effort to engage in social and economic activity,” said Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
  • Asian and US stocks have stuttered, as concerns remain about the impact of a fresh spike of cases on an economic recovery.
  • Around 20% of Belt and Road projects have been seriously affected by the pandemic, according to a survey by China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
  • Increased air freight levels, driven by demand for protective equipment, appear to be on the way down. Airlines have relied on cargo in the absence of passengers, so declines are a concern for many carriers, reports Reuters.

2. Mask mandating in the US

California has ordered residents to wear masks in almost all situations when they're outside their homes. The only exceptions are when eating and drinking in restaurants or exercising.

“Simply put, we are seeing too many people with faces uncovered, putting at risk the real progress we have made in fighting the disease,” said Governor Gavin Newsom.

coronavirus covid-19 US
Total US cases as of June 18.
Image: Our World in Data

Confirmed cases in the US have exceeded 2.1 million, while deaths stand at 118,434, according to Johns Hopkins University.

coronavirus, health, COVID19, pandemic

What is the World Economic Forum doing to manage emerging risks from COVID-19?

The first global pandemic in more than 100 years, COVID-19 has spread throughout the world at an unprecedented speed. At the time of writing, 4.5 million cases have been confirmed and more than 300,000 people have died due to the virus.

As countries seek to recover, some of the more long-term economic, business, environmental, societal and technological challenges and opportunities are just beginning to become visible.

To help all stakeholders – communities, governments, businesses and individuals understand the emerging risks and follow-on effects generated by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, the World Economic Forum, in collaboration with Marsh and McLennan and Zurich Insurance Group, has launched its COVID-19 Risks Outlook: A Preliminary Mapping and its Implications - a companion for decision-makers, building on the Forum’s annual Global Risks Report.

The report reveals that the economic impact of COVID-19 is dominating companies’ risks perceptions.

Companies are invited to join the Forum’s work to help manage the identified emerging risks of COVID-19 across industries to shape a better future. Read the full COVID-19 Risks Outlook: A Preliminary Mapping and its Implications report here, and our impact story with further information.

3. Advancing digital trade

The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the adoption of digital technologies - but the expansion of digital trade faces significant hurdles, write Ziyang Fan, Head of Digital Trade at the World Economic Forum, and Mike Gallaher, Fellow, Digital Trade, at the World Economic Forum.

Countries have turned to digital protectionism in the face of concerns about privacy, ownership and security. But, it's possible to overcome these challenges without the need for protectionism, write the authors.

cross-border data flows digital trade protectionism
Restrictions on cross-border data flows had been climbing steadily even before the COVID-19 pandemic.
Image: ECIPE

These are the five things that need to happen: advance forward-looking trade agreements, promote greater interoperability, digitize trade documentation, close the digital divide, build trusted technologies for all.