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Covid 19 in meat/fish products halt trade

Date: August 17th, 2020

Last year, we reported the sustainable rise of the cod fishing stocks after years of careful management and once again, our fishing industry will be an important cog in Canada’s recovery. Today, China introduced restrictions on meat and fish imports from countries suffering badly from COVID 19.

The FT reported that they have targeted chicken imports from Brazil after a shipment of chicken was found to have contained the coronavirus. This will place increased scrutiny and pressure on the global supply chain.

Staying with China, it's recovery appears to be more uneven than was first recognized or expected. While the country’s manufacturing output has increased and exports have risen, overall domestic consumption has fallen. This was largely unexpected and was caused by a lack of confidence by the consumer. The exception to this was car sales, a trend that we are likely to see in other countries as more people shun public transport and opt for the safety of their own car. This is going to place increased pressure on a city’s road infrastructure and require increased and careful public policy changes.

Two other notable stories:

Emerging Markets in general - fiscal policy remains in focus and a concern for these economies. Record low interest rates across these countries in an effort by policy makers to soften the blow to their economies by stoking domestic demand. This has meant that their currencies are weak and will likely remain weak for some time to come. Brazil and Mexican currencies are below where they started the year.

At the end of last week, Europe reported that employment in the EU zone had dropped by 5.5 million, as the EU labour market shrank by a record number and suffered its sharpest decline since 1995. Germany, Spain, France and Italy reported quarterly drops of greater than 10%. This was less than the 20% the UK suffered, an astounding amount by any measure.

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