SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — The death toll has risen to 170 in the new virus outbreak in China as foreign evacuees from the worst-hit region begin returning home under close observation. World health officials expressed “great concern” that the disease is starting to spread between people outside of China.
The coronavirus has become not just a health threat, but economists are predicting the global economy could suffer because of the deadly virus outbreak.
According to some economists, if China’s economy is in trouble, the trickle effect could be painful in the United States. Experts, however, said it is still too early to tell what our economy will do long term as a result of China’s slowdown. The immediate impacts of coronavirus may be seen in the goods people use in our day to day life – from toys to clothes to just about anything that is made in China and sold by companies like Amazon.
Keeley Luhnow now wonders if the Amazon item she purchased earlier this month will arrive at all.
“On January 16th, it made it to the shipper, according to China post tracking. It has been sitting there ever since,” she said.
Her package is awaiting delivery in Changsha, China – about three hours out of Wuhan, where the virus started.
University of San Diego economics professor Alan Gin said the interruptions in the supply chain could also impact major American tech companies – from Apple to Google to San Diego based Qualcomm.
“Any sort of disruptions in China could affect even smaller types of industries that make clothes and toys and products like that. A company like Qualcomm does a lot of business in China and so they may not be directly affected by coronavirus, but if the Chinese economy slows there will be less purchases of Qualcomm products,” said Professor Gin.
Whether delayed deliveries will be a problem for consumers, and how long the potential impacts could last remains unclear. Gin says, it would likely depend on how fast health officials can get a handle on coronavirus.
How long it could last depend on how fast health officials can get a handle on coronavirus.
“Right now, factories are closed until February 8th. If it extends, we will see lots of disruptions in the supply chain,” said Professor Gin.
News 8 reached out to Amazon and a media representative said they are working to provide information on what consumers should expect.