Commentary: Joint efforts needed to quell panic amid epidemic, market turbulence-Xinhua

Commentary: Joint efforts needed to quell panic amid epidemic, market turbulence

Source: Xinhua

Editor: huaxia

2020-03-10 22:12:55

BEIJING, March 10 (Xinhua) -- Fear and panic seem to have been fermenting fast across the world over the past few days, as the threat of a coronavirus pandemic has become increasingly real and oil prices have nosedived following an OPEC-Russia split.

At such a critical juncture, when many of mankind's common interests are at stake, the world must take action to quell panic and promote stability and certainty for global prosperity.

The primary task, of course, is to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Though a difficult job with over 100 countries and regions already hit, the international community could still beat the disease with strong and concerted containment measures.

China's progress in bringing the epidemic under control has shown that by heading off the flow of potential infections with such decisive moves as the introduction of strict quarantine measures and the suspension of large public gatherings, it is possible to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

Another lesson from China's experience is that an all-society, all-government approach should be adopted in the battle against the virus.

In this struggle against a previously unknown infectious disease, it is understandable to harbor concerns. However, if uncontrolled, those concerns could entail unwarranted fear, and unwarranted fear could beget racism and hatred toward certain groups of people.

In the past weeks, some U.S. politicians have become either makers or spreaders of rumors and lies, seeking to mislead the public about China's efforts in the COVID-19 epidemic.

Responsible governments worldwide should come out loud and clear against misinformation, while denying racism and xenophobia any chance to swell and swing people's minds.

In the economic aspect, the knock-on effects of the COVID-19 outbreak, if not properly handled, risk sending the global economy back into recession.

As the second largest economy in the world and a driving force for global growth in the past decade, China has articulated its confidence in a rapid recovery after the outbreak, with well-managed plans to resume work and production, injecting urgently needed certainty into world prosperity.

With a high level of diversified industrial capacity and economic resilience, as well as a package of policies such as tax and fee reductions, financial services, rent reductions and employment subsidies, China's confidence is well-founded.

The rest of the world should work with China to stabilize global markets and coordinate their monetary and macro-economic policies, as well as avoiding taking actions that could pile up the elements of uncertainty.

When the 2008 global financial crisis hit, countries around the world managed to come together to arrest panic and jointly get the global economy back on track for recovery.

This time, the international community, with a raging epidemic and a roiling global economy, is facing a more arduous test. However, whatever the difficulty, countries worldwide should repeat what they did more than 10 years ago.