Coronavirus: Asian ‘poster child’ heads for recession due to virus

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The world received an indication of the economic impact of the coronavirus when Singapore released its initial growth figures for this quarter.

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The trade-dependent city-state now appears to be heading for its first recession in an entire year in about two decades.

The figures suggest that the global economy is also poised for strong contraction.

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This week, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) warned of a worse global recession than after the 2008 financial crisis.

Singapore said that gross domestic product (GDP) shrank 2.2% from the previous year, while, compared to the previous quarter, GDP fell 10.6%.

It is the biggest quarterly contraction for the Southeast Asian country since 2009, amid the global financial crisis.

As one of the first countries to release economic growth data for the period when the outbreak spread globally, Singapore's figures provide a glimpse of how the ongoing pandemic could affect economies worldwide.

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Singapore was also one of the first countries outside of China to report cases of the coronavirus.

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Later on Thursday, Singapore announced a $ 33.7 billion (28.3 billion pounds) package to help protect its economy from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

This is after the IMF this week predicted a global recession this year that would be at least as bad as the one seen in the wake of the financial crisis more than a decade ago.

The blockades and other measures imposed by governments around the world to slow the spread of the virus are affecting the global economy, with many analysts now expecting a deep and long recession.

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