Europe became the main focus of COVID-19 infections in the world, surpassing mainland China for the past several weeks. Prague’s market .PX went down 2.2% due to falling oil prices and deteriorating reports of corporate earnings, in addition to other stock markets like the Polish and Hungarian according to Nasdaq.com*. Countries such as Italy, Spain and France have seen their health systems slump down due to the virus. Despite these circumstances, there is one exemplary country that has successfully flattened the contagion curve, this is the Czech Republic. It’s observed that cases reported here are much less compared to the countries of similar size and population such as the Netherlands, Belgium or Portugal, according to the John Hopkins University**.
The Czech Republic has established multiple strategies to contain the spread of the virus, the first was declaring a state of emergency on March 13, sooner than other countries according to the Czech government***. Moreover, compelling the population to wear face masks when going outside, allowing hospitals to self-supply medical resources and offering updated information through its website to all citizens, according to Visualpolitik****.
In the same report, they mentioned that Prague has been collaborating closely with Taipei, Taiwan, since the beginning of the year. The Czech Republic managed to take drastic measures from all the information shared by the Asian country; long before the WHO itself recommended them. Measures to ban flights from China since February 8 has indeed slowed down the economy, which was a criticized but effective decision against the virus, according to Praguemorning*****.
In an effort to revive the health of their economies, the Austrian, Danish and Czech leaders intend to implement “smart quarantine”, according to Vox.com******. This measure will work if infected citizens voluntarily offer the government access to their geolocation and last bank transactions. This way, they will be able to locate possible infected individuals, these people, in turn, will have to be tested and be under mandatory quarantine, according to Praguemorning*******.
While governments do their best to care for their citizens, they must also create plans to avoid the collapse of their economies to face a strong threat that the coronavirus is presenting. As is the case of Asian countries that have been gradually restoring their economies, such as Japan, China, Hong Kong and South Korea, which have shown improvements in their stock markets by 2.8%, 0.8%, 0.7% and 1.5% respectively, according to The New York Times********.
- ANON ********
Nytimes.com. 2020. [online] Available at: <https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/14/business/stocks-today-coronavirus.html#link-58527000> [Accessed 14 April 2020].
- CZECH REPUBLIC TO START “SMART QUARANTINE” IN SOUTH MORAVIA. HOW DOES IT WORK? *******
(Czech Republic to Start “Smart Quarantine” in South Moravia. How Does It Work?, 2020)
Prague Morning. 2020. Czech Republic To Start “Smart Quarantine” In South Moravia. How Does It Work?. [online] Available at: <https://www.praguemorning.cz/czech-republic-smart-quarantine/> [Accessed 17 April 2020].
- FONSECA, E. ****
CHEQUIA y el CORONAVIRUS ¿Un modelo a seguir para EL MUNDO?
(CHEQUIA y el CORONAVIRUS ¿Un modelo a seguir para EL MUNDO?, 2020)
YCHEQUIA y el CORONAVIRUS ¿Un modelo a seguir para EL MUNDO?. 2020. Directed by E. Fonseca. Prague, Czech Republic: VisualPolitik. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pI96OtVwoM0
- IT’S OFFICIAL: CZECH GOVERNMENT BANS DIRECT FLIGHTS TO CHINA *****
(It’s Official: Czech Government Bans Direct Flights to China, 2020)
Prague Morning. 2020. It’s Official: Czech Government Bans Direct Flights To China. [online] Available at: <https://www.praguemorning.cz/czech-government-bans-direct-flights-to-china/> [Accessed 17 April 2020].
- JOHNS HOPKINS CORONAVIRUS RESOURCE CENTER **
(Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center, 2020)
Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. 2020. Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. [online] Available at: <https://coronavirus.jhu.edu/map.html> [Accessed 17 April 2020].
- KOMUVES, A. AND HOVET, J. *
CEE MARKETS-Shares fall as optimism fades, currencies hold up
(Komuves and Hovet, 2020)
Komuves, A. and Hovet, J., 2020. CEE MARKETS-Shares Fall As Optimism Fades, Currencies Hold Up. [online] Nasdaq. Available at: <https://www.nasdaq.com/articles/cee-markets-shares-fall-as-optimism-fades-currencies-hold-up-2020-04-15> [Accessed 17 April 2020].
- MEASURES ADOPTED BY THE CZECH GOVERNMENT AGAINST CORONAVIRUS | GOVERNMENT OF THE CZECH REPUBLIC ***
(Measures adopted by the Czech Government against coronavirus | Government of the Czech Republic, 2020)
Vlada.cz. 2020. Measures Adopted By The Czech Government Against Coronavirus | Government Of The Czech Republic. [online] Available at: <https://www.vlada.cz/en/media-centrum/aktualne/measures-adopted-by-the-czech-government-against-coronavirus-180545/> [Accessed 17 April 2020].
- WARD, A. ******
3 European countries are about to lift their lockdowns
Ward, A., 2020. 3 European Countries Are About To Lift Their Lockdowns. [online] Vox. Available at: <https://www.vox.com/2020/4/10/21215317/coronavirus-europe-lockdown-denmark-austria-czech-republic> [Accessed 17 April 2020].