Spike In Virus Outbreaks Threatens Global Reopening Plans

Some parts of the world have seen new spikes in infections

Plans across the world to reopen economies and re-enter public life are being thwarted by new flare-ups of the coronavirus.

In South Korea, Germany and China, new spikes in infections have roiled attempts to roll back lockdowns.

In Seoul, bars and clubs had to shut down again due to a new spate of infections linked to those types of areas, and there were 34 new infections on Sunday. That came after weeks with no new infections.

A Chinese city on the border with North Korea reported another series of new infections, and so China had to shut things down again, too. And in Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel moved to reopen much of the economy, but that came with a rise in the reproduction rate – the number of people who each infected person then also infects.

According to stats from the Robert Koch Institute, that number had reached 1.1 on Sunday (May 10).

The grim news comes as other European countries tentatively step toward phases to reopen.

In Spain, with the rate of death reaching its lowest point in months, around half of the country will go into ‘Phase 1’ of reopening efforts and be allowed to dine in restaurants in some capacities. Some of the harder-hit areas like Madrid and Barcelona will still have restrictions, however.

Children in secondary school in Norway will be allowed to return to class, while in Denmark, some shops will reopen their doors.

France will begin lifting harsh restrictions like needing a permission slip to leave the house, and restaurants will be allowed to operate so long as they implement social distancing restrictions. The U.K. will ease restrictions on exercising, and Italy, which was under a total lockdown for months, may end it earlier than expected.

In America, as summer approaches, complete with warming climes, the pandemic is still ongoing. Many people report being hesitant to leave their houses due to virus fears, although the summer could see new forms of road trips taken to more natural locales, far away from infection hotspots.



The How We Shop Report, a PYMNTS collaboration with PayPal, aims to understand how consumers of all ages and incomes are shifting to shopping and paying online in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our research builds on a series of studies conducted since March, surveying more than 16,000 consumers on how their shopping habits and payments preferences are changing as the crisis continues. This report focuses on our latest survey of 2,163 respondents and examines how their increased appetite for online commerce and digital touchless methods, such as QR codes, contactless cards and digital wallets, is poised to shape the post-pandemic economy.