The coronavirus has stifled China’s economy as businesses in more than 20 provinces and other regions remain shuttered until at least Feb. 10, reports The New York Times.
Smartphone shipments could drop by 40 percent, according to analysts at Wedbush Securities, as China is the world's largest smartphone market.
The coronavirus outbreak is believed to have started in Wuhan, China. Just 12 Americans have been infected with the virus, which has killed more than 900 people worldwide, though the number of confirmed infections in China rose to 40,171 on Monday, per China’s National Health Commission.
China raised the death toll from its coronavirus outbreak to 811 on Sunday, passing the number killed globally by the SARS epidemic.
Communist Party rulers ordered virtual lockdowns, canceled flights, closed factories and shut schools since the virus’ outbreak.
“It’s like Europe in medieval times where each city has its checks and crosschecks,” Jöerg Wuttke, the president of the European Chamber of Commerce in China, told the Times.
Nissan of Japan said it would shut down its plant in Kyushu, Japan, for four days later this week “due to supply shortages of parts from China.”
Ford Motor said it would “ramp up our production over the following weeks,” and General Motors noted it would reopen its huge assembly plants in China on Saturday, “based on local employees’ safety readiness, supply chain readiness and product inventory needs.”
“It’s uncertain whether factories could resume production this week amid local quarantine efforts and traffic controls. Indeed, many authorities and enterprises at local levels are targeting Feb. 17th or later to restart business, and the resumption is likely to be a phased approach,” Morgan Stanley wrote in a report on Monday morning.
But, it said, “there are still uncertainties as to how quickly the coronavirus situation will be brought under control and when production and goods transportation services will be ramped up to normal levels.”
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