China-ASEAN Monitor: Indonesia to restrict import of Chinese livestock over coronavirus concerns
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Economy, Investment and Trade
Indonesia to restrict import of Chinese livestock over coronavirus concerns
(4 February 2020) Indonesia’s government has announced that it intends to restrict the import of live animals from China due to the coronavirus outbreak. The government stressed that the restrictions would only apply to live animals, and not all food and beverages. Expecting an impact on tourism, the government also announced that it will encourage airlines to implement special rates for top tourism destinations such as Bali and the Riau Islands to attract tourists from other countries besides China. Indonesia will bar all flights to and from China starting on 5 February.
Coronavirus expected to have much wider and deeper impact on the Singaporean economy
(3 February 2020) The Singapore Minister for Trade and Industry stated that he believes the impact of the coronavirus will have a “much wider and deeper impact” on the world economy than the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) outbreak in 2003, in part due to China’s larger economy and more extensive trade relations. Steps taken by the government include barring Chinese nationals from entering the country save some exceptions, as well as announcing the waive of licence fees for hotels, travel agents and tourist guides to cushion the impact on the tourism industry. The government is also studying the provision of temporary bridging loans for affected businesses.
Thailand stands to lose US$64.6 million in exports to China in Q1 2020
(4 February 2020) Thailand stands to lose US$64.6 million in exports to China in the first quarter of 2020 due to the impact of the coronavirus on global supply chains. This was stated by a Thai shipping association, which also claimed that the exports of fresh fruits and vegetables will be the worst affected. China was Thailand’s second-largest export market in 2019, with its market amounting to US$29.2 billion. The association has maintained its forecast for overall export growth of 0-1% in 2020, although the coronavirus is expected to cut shipments by 0.11%.
Vietnam stock market plunges more than 6% after Lunar New Year
(5 February 2020) Vietnam’s benchmark VN Index dropped by more than 6% since January 30, when it was closed for the Lunar New Year, due to the coronavirus outbreak in China. It is the second-largest plunge in the world after China’s own bourse. The Vietnamese benchmark has been in a bear market since 2018 and is 23% away from a record high hit in April of that year. Vietnamese-Chinese connectivity has been impacted by the virus, with agricultural exports to China possibly impacted by the closing of land borders and travel restrictions. Vietnamese imports of textile products and machinery for its factories are also expected to be impacted.
The Philippines to assist migrant workers affected by China travel bans
(4 February 2020) The Philippines’ Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA) will provide around US$200 cash to overseas Filipino workers affected by the recent travel restrictions to China due to the coronavirus outbreak. On 2 February, an indefinite prohibition was imposed on Filipinos from travelling to China, Hong Kong, and Macau. The OWWA will also provide accommodation and transportation for the stranded workers. At least 300 Chinese nationals are also stranded in the Philippines.