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China reports 2,048 more coronavirus cases, 105 deaths

17 February 2020 13:54

BEIJING. KAZINFORM The new coronavirus outbreak in China has infected an additional 2,048 people and killed 105 more people on the mainland, the country's health authorities said Monday, a day after worst-hit Hubei Province rolled out stricter restrictions to contain the outbreak.

The new figures, as of Sunday, have brought the total to 70,548 cases and 1,770 deaths. The vast majority have been reported in Hubei, the central Chinese province at the center of the epidemic, Kyodo reports.

China's central bank rolled out on Monday a series of initiatives expected to ease the impact on businesses hit by the outbreak, including lowering interest rates on 200 billion yuan ($28.7 billion) worth of one-year medium-term loans.

Restrictions were further tightened in Hubei on Sunday after its newly installed provincial leader, Ying Yong, instructed the province to boost medical supplies and quarantine measures to «resolutely prevent the epidemic from spreading from urban to rural areas,» according to the local government.

Non-vital vehicles were banned from being on roads, while businesses, apart from supermarkets, pharmacies and medical supply manufacturers, are required to remain shut.

Meanwhile, Xiaogan, a Hubei city about 50 kilometers northwest of the worst-affected city of Wuhan, was put under lockdown starting Friday afternoon, implementing «the strictest and most effective control measures,» according to the official Xinhua News Agency.

The city, which had reported 2,697 infections and 57 deaths by Friday while being subject to travel restrictions since late January, will be under quarantine for at least two weeks.

Japanese auto companies Toyota Motor Corp. and Mazda Motor Corp. said they partially resumed operations on Monday at factories in China, at reduced output, after they had been suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Keywords: Coronavirus, World News, China,