Coronavirus

Donald Trump declares Covid-19 coronavirus a US national emergency

Trump made the announcement at a Rose Garden news conference.

Trump said he was declaring the national emergency in order to "unleash the full power of the federal government."

He urged every state to set up emergency centers to help fight the virus.

The declaration enabled the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to assist state and local governments and coordinate the US response to the crisis. The virus has killed 41 people in the United States.

Canadian PM Trudeau's wife tests positive for coronavirus

"She will remain in isolation for the time being. She is feeling well, is taking all the recommended precautions and her symptoms remain mild," it read.

The couple is now self-isolating.

Mr Trudeau is in good health and has no symptoms, according to his office, but he will remain in isolation for 14 days.

There are no plans at present for Mr Trudeau to be tested for coronavirus.

"The prime minister will continue to fully assume his duties and will address Canadians tomorrow (Friday)," his office said.

Coronavirus: French Polynesia won't follow France in closing schools

A government spokesperson said the situation in French Polynesia, with one case, was nothing like that in metropolitan France, which had more than 2280.

The territory's member of the French National Assembly, Maine Sage, was confirmed to have Covid-19 yesterday.

It is believed she contracted the virus during a committee meeting in Paris.

Authorities are trying to track down and isolate her contacts since she returned to Tahiti last weekend.

Piha Pro postponed due to coronavirus concerns

The World Surf League (WSL) has decided to postpone all events in March.

"Coronavirus is having massive consequences for sporting events and gatherings of all kinds around the world, and we are no different," WSL chief executive Erik Logan said.

"We did not take this decision lightly as we are aware that it has a significant impact on the surfing community. However, the health and safety of our athletes, fans, and staff are paramount. We've been in close contact with our athletes and we feel strongly that this is the right thing to do right now."

Fast and Furious 9 film release put back by 11 months

F9 was due out in May, but will now not reach cinemas until April 2021.

"It's become clear that it won't be possible for all of our fans around the world to see the film this May," a statement said on Twitter.

F9 is the ninth main instalment in the franchise, and will star Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez and Charlize Theron.

"While we know there is disappointment in having to wait a little while longer, this move is made with the safety of everyone as our foremost consideration. Moving will allow our global family to experience our new chapter together."

Australia v NZ behind closed doors

Cricket Australia (CA) confirmed that fans will not be allowed into grounds to watch the three-match series, which starts on Friday at the SCG.

Ticket-holders will be given a full refund with no decision yet made over Australia's upcoming three-match Twenty20 international tour of New Zealand.

"Cricket Australia will continue to monitor the coronavirus situation at home and overseas before making a decision on Australian men's international matches beyond the Australian leg of the ODI tournament," said a statement.

Google tells staff to work at home due to coronavirus

Last week the tech giant sent a memo to staff recommending that employees in Washington state work from home.

It has now expanded that request to all of its almost 100,000 workers across 11 office in the US and Canada.

Alphabet is the latest company to make such an announcement as US coronavirus cases have risen to almost 1,000.

"Out of an abundance of caution, and for the protection of Alphabet and the broader community, we now recommend you work from home if your role allows," Chris Rackow, Google's vice president of global security, wrote in an email to workers.

Auckland's Pasifika festival cancelled amid coronavirus fears

All five cases of the virus in New Zealand have been in the Auckland region.

More than 400 local and international artists were on the cards to perform at the festival, which was due to start tomorrow.

It is the second year in a row the festival has been cancelled, after last year's event was called off in the aftermath of the 15 March terrorist attack in Christchurch.

There were concerns earlier this week that it would be called off again, but it was given the all clear to go ahead on Tuesday, with authorities instead warning anyone who felt sick to stay home.

Coronavirus: Auckland Airport slashes earnings forecast by up to $50m

The company now expects full year underlying earnings between $210m and $235m.

It's previous forecast was between $260m and $270m.

Chief executive Adrian Littlewood said passenger numbers for the first 10 days of this month were down 18 percent on last year, and he expects further decreases in the next few months.

Trading in the company's shares was halted yesterday afternoon as it revised its financial forecasts.

The share price has fallen 16 percent over the past three weeks.

NBA suspends season until further notice after player tests positive for the coronavirus

"The NBA is suspending game play following the conclusion of tonight's schedule of games until further notice,'' the league said in a statement issued shortly after 9:30 p.m. ET.

"The NBA will use this hiatus to determine next steps for moving forward in regard to the coronavirus pandemic.''

The player is the Jazz's Rudy Gobert, sources told ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. That led to Utah's game at Oklahoma City being postponed just before tipoff.