Keiko Chuno
The University of Japan,
Chiba, Japan
The new corona virus has spread in almost 160 countries across the globe. The world economy has aready been hit, severely, by the outbreak. Hubei state of China, epicenter of the outbreak, was completely lockdown last month. The most hit countries outside mainland China are Italy and Iran. Medical community is trying its best to cope and contain this virus but there is no satisfactory success. Italy, the fourth big economic contributor to European Union is under the state of emergency. Malls, markets and musuems are shut nationwide. As most of the countires are interconnected economically and China being the second largest economy, the pace of development is forced to slow down. There is a major threat for global recession.     
The businesses-particulalry tourism, hospitality and manufactuing have recorded a huge loss. There is a shadow on organizing Olympics-2020 in Tokyo. If this happens, the sentiments of investors in Japan will be negatively impacted. There are several meetings held to reconsider the organizing the games. As per the data provided by the the Spectator Index, given below, Italy was the most careless nation to deal with this pandemic. India, the second largest populated country has done great job till now by locking down several cities and suspending train and air services-domestic and international. 

Coronavirus cases per million people (Source: Spectator Index)

Italy: 977
Spain: 621
Germany: 297
Iran: 261
Netherlands: 248
France: 246
South Korea: 173
US: 101
UK: 84
China: 56
Australia: 53
Canada: 38
Turkey: 15
Saudi: 15
Japan: 8
Brazil: 7
Egypt: 3.2
Indonesia: 1.9
India: 0.3

However the reports are comming that Japan is not stopping huge gatherings and sakura viewing parties in parks are going on as usuals. Some people called Japenese, the covidiotics and insane, angrily.

This is a time for all citizens across the globe to be more responsible and take care of. Covid-19 is hidden monster and more dangerous than atom bombs.  

Corona Virus and Global Economy


Kumiko Yurimoto

Department of Humanities and Culture, 
Hoso Daigaku, Wakaba, Mihama-ku,
Chiba, Japan.

Can a virus cause economic slowdown? The answer is simply, yes. More than two dozens countries are affected by Corona virus which started spreading from Wuhan, China. Many multinational companies were forced to shut down or partly cut their operations across the globe. A Japanese food chain, ‘Izakaya’ has announced to shut all of its outlets in mainland China as only a few customers are turning to their restaurants. Hyundai, an other company in Korea has announced to curtails its productions. Philipines, Thailand and Indonesia are the other countries which are severely affected by this epidemic.    

Tourism is most affected sector due to the Corona virus. Many tour operators have cancelled their bookings and several countries have suspended issuing Visa to Chinese citizens. Several flights are already restrained flying to China and businesses are hampered. The GDP growth for China has been predicted to be below 5% and a panic is emerging due to all this. It will pull down the global economy particularly nations dependent on Chinese economy will be affected the most, including Japan. 
The prices of masks in Tokyo have surged many fold and out of stock in the city. Even the online stores are not able to meet the supply. Several cities in China are are facing self lockdown and economic activities are not happening at all due to the fear.  “Coronavirus will have a larger negative effect on the global economy than the SARS outbreak in 2003,” IHS Markit wrote, adding that China accounted for 4.2% of the global economy in 2003. The report says China now commands 16.3% of the world’s GDP. “Therefore, any slowdown in the Chinese economy sends not ripples but waves across the globe”, cites CNBC. 

As number of deaths have crossed more than one thousand in China mainland, the panic is spreading among business communities. The sales of Nissan motors dropped to around 18% in China. This is a clear sign of the impact of the virus on economy. Similar impacts can easily be found in neighboring countries like Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and Japan too. A Japanese taxi driver in 80s died recently and number of infected persons in Cruise ship Diamond Princess is gradually increasing. If it will spread further the Japanese economy may be shaken. Though there is no direct threat to forthcoming Olympic games but if the outbreak continues it will pose a potential threat to organize the games. 

The Corona virus outbreak has burdened the global economy and hampered the business movement severely. China being an economic giant affecting the global businesses. Many companies, particularly in aviation sector and tourism are the most hit. The Guardian has reported that, Ikea has closed all of its 30 stores in China, while McDonalds shut about 300 restaurants, 10% of its network in the country, and Starbucks has shut about half of its 4,100 cafes. This just a tip of the iceberg. As there is no effective control to spread the virus, the future of global economy is still in limbo.  

Nation in Environmental Crises: Australian Bushfires

Credit: Getty Images

Kouno Kenich

Faculty of Liberal Arts,
The Open University of Japan,
Chiba, Japan.

Extreme weathers are showing their presence across the globe. Bushfires had happened earlier too but rains were able to extinguish and control them in time. The bushfires of Australia have extended to almost three states due to strong winds and scorching temperature. People and firefighters didn’t receive well, PM Scott Morrison during his recent visit to fire hit areas of New South Wales (NSW). As the death toll has reached almost 23 and supposed to rise, anger and pain growing among common folk. 

One might see this as a natural disaster but, as we know, human activities are more responsible to incite such a dangerous happenings of the history. In telecast, Scott Morrison seems helpless. He said, "In recent times, particularly over the course of the balance of this week, we have seen this disaster escalate to an entirely new level.” It was Amazon a few months ago, it is Australia now, it will be some other part of the earth in years to come. Relationship between humans and nature is completely changing and new models of development are continuously burdening the nature and its channels. A wast population is chemicalizing the earth by dumping beauty products, fertilizers, vehicular and electronic wastes, and various types of plastics. It is absolutely destroying the ecosystem of the earth. Rains have become uncontrolled phenomenon. Where as there is no sign of it in Australia, there are immense floods in Indonesian capital Jakarta. Both disasters are happening together in an unbalance way causing deaths and destructions.  New Zealand Herald has stated that, “The fire danger increased as temperatures rose Saturday to record levels across Australia, surpassing 43C in Canberra, the capital, and reaching a record-high 48.9C in Penrith, in Sydney's western suburbs.” Jakarta is reeling under water and Canberra under fire. Two capital cities have met altogether different fates but the reason is one i.e. our policies  and ignorance towards environmental issues. DW has reported that, “Australia's deadly fires have burned through more than 5.25 million hectares (13 million acres) of land since September, causing catastrophic damage to property and wildlife.” Though one cannot agree to the idea of blame game on a single or a few people. "There has been a lot of blame being thrown around," PM Morrison opined. "And now is the time to focus on the response that is being made. Blame doesn't help anybody at this time and over-analysis of these things is not a productive exercise," the  PM added."There is no dispute in this country about the issue of climate change globally and its effect on global weather patterns and that includes how it impacts in Australia," stated Scott Morrison. Bushfires in Australia can happen anytime in the year but there are several seasonal bushfires too. Exploiting natural resources would not help. A balanced lifestyle and restraint desire for industrial development is the only way to go ahead. Consumerism is another threat for the future of mother earth.

Ecosplay in Mass Media: Decoding Power and Protest

Credit: Fusion Arts
 Ram Dwivedi
Director Research, CCGS

The term ‘Cosplay’ was coined by M Takahashi in the year 1984. Popularized by mass media it became a global phenomenon. Prefixed with ‘E’ to the cosplaying gives a complex reflection of meaning. What is that?  It becomes ‘Ecos’, meaning thereby is that, ecology added with costume playing. In contemporary global scenario Ecology has become an important issues to get addressed. It is propounded that a Cosplaying is always done under certain Ecological conditions and essentially provides a meaning to the coplayer. The cosplaying was working, effectively, much earlier than 1984 as a symbol of power and protest during public gatherings, formal meetings and mass movements. This research paper evaluates Ecosplaying as a social-Infuencer and as symbols of power and protest projected through various platforms of communication media. In this research the role of mass media in depicting Ecosplaying will also be discussed to examine its effectivity in environmental awareness and how these acts of ecosplaying are bringing substantial changes in the real life, opinion buiding and social movements. A qualitative research methodology has been adopted to elucidate the research problem.  



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