Forbes 19 Apr 2020

Cannabis and Coronavirus: How Pandemic Spending Patterns Are Shaping The Industry


In March, when the majority of American businesses were forced to close due to coronavirus, one industry is still staying somewhat afloat: cannabis.

During the week of March 16, cannabis dispensaries in legal states across the country started seeing their sales surge with long lines forming outside of stores and an uptick in online ordering and delivery services — which was due to an initial stocking up mentality when the fate of dispensary operations was unclear.

The government borrowed a record £62bn last month to pay for the ballooning costs of the COVID-19 pandemic - especially the job retention scheme.

This is almost three times higher than the amount borrowed in April 2012 during the last economic recession.

Sources of government revenue - like VAT receipts - have fallen as consumers spend less on household goods and clothing.

#coronavirus #covid19 #uk
CGTN's Asieh Namdar discusses the similarities and differences in how China and the United States are handling the pandemic with Sourabh Gupta, a Senior Asia-Pacific international relations policy specialist with the Institute for China-American studies.
Round upon round of temperature checks at building entrances. Nervous glances between passengers on the reawakening subway trains. And a working day that bans close contact with colleagues. Millions of people across China are re-adjusting to public life after the lifting of weeks-long lockdowns and other restrictions that sought to stop the spread of coronavirus.

Governments in Beijing, Shanghai and Wuhan - the latter the one-time epicentre of what has now mushroomed into a coronavirus pandemic - are among those trying to walk a line between letting people resume a semblance of regular life while minimising the risk of future outbreaks. Yet the ‘new normal' in China is very different to life before lockdown. Apart from having to follow rules and regulations imposed by local authorities, people are also making major changes to their personal lives, from taking different commutes to working different hours. Many are cutting their daily outgoings, and some are even considering moving from expensive megacities to places where their money will stretch further.

Chinese authorities are placing big data at the heart of efforts to keep coronavirus at bay, with a QR code-based 'traffic light' system tracking people's movements and health. But critics say that coronavirus is being used as a pretext for increased surveillance of the entire population well into the future. Governments around the world are closely watching China's strategy to combat coronavirus, amid rising tensions between Beijing and Washington over US President Donald Trump's unsubstantiated claims about the origin of the coronavirus.

We'll look at how people in China are adapting to daily life after coronavirus upended what came before. Join the conversation.
New Zealand and Iceland are on the brink of eliminating COVID-19 - with close to zero active cases in both countries. Both are geographically isolated, with small populations - big advantages in fighting COVID-19. However they've taken very different strategies - with similar success.

#BBCOS #BBCOutsideSource

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