​Abe expected to extend state of emergency until end of May: NHK

 Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, NHK, Japan, virus, coronavirus

Abe: Extra hospital capacity among steps key to fight virus
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe listens to Director General of International Atomic Energy Agency, IAEA, Rafael Mariano Grossi, during Grossi's courtesy call at Abe's official residence in Tokyo, Japan, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2020. (Kimimasa Mayama/Pool Photo via AP)

TAIPEI (The China Post) – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will extend the state of emergency until the end of May, state broadcaster NHK reported Monday.

Abe is expected to explain his reasoning at an evening news conference, days before the state of emergency officially expires on Wednesday, the broadcaster said.

The government could also ease some of the current restrictions to allow relatively low-risk areas, such as parks, to reopen even in hard-hit prefectures.

The outbreak has triggered a global slump in economic activity which threatens to plunge the world’s third-largest economy into a deep recession.

Japan’s parliament last week approved a supplementary budget to finance the government’s response to the outbreak and an emergency fund of US$1.3 billion (2.5 billion euros).

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will extend the state of emergency until the end of May amid concerns that the world’s third-largest economy could plunge into a deep recession.