Here are the updates:

Thursday 23 July

06:53 GMT – South Korea has the worst economic performance in over 20 years

The South Korean economy performed worse in over 20 years in the second quarter, the central bank said, while the coronavirus pandemic has hammered its exports.

Asia’s fourth largest economy contracted 2.9% year-on-year in the April-June period, said the Bank of Korea.

It was the most rapid drop after a 3.8 percent drop in the fourth quarter of 1998 in the aftermath of the Asian financial crisis.

06:20 GMT – South Africa records new high virus deaths

Confirmed cases of coronavirus in South Africa have almost reached 400,000, while the country has a new daily high of 572 deaths.

South Africa is now one of the top five countries in the world in terms of reported virus cases and constitutes more than half of the cases on the African continent with 394,948. The deaths are at 5,940.

Public hospitals are struggling with increasing patient numbers and over 5,000 health workers have been infected.

Catering workers gather in Parkhurst, Johannesburg, to join a national protest organized by the Restaurant Association of South Africa (RASA) against the national blocking rules enacted by the South African government to combat the rise of COVID-19 coronavirus cases [Luca Sola/AFP]

05:55 GMT – Israel appoints supreme coronavirus as infections grow

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has appointed a public health professional for the post announced by his office, ahalfway through the editing, he asks the Israeli government to appoint a dedicated coronavirus response coordinator.

He said in a statement that the job went to Ronnie Gamzu, CEO of the Sourasky medical complex in Tel Aviv.

“Professor Gamzu has many years of administrative experience in the field of health, including the previous service as director general of the ministry of health,” he added.

05:20 GMT – India sets another daily record for virus cases

The Indian health ministry reported a new record of 45,720 new coronavirus cases, bringing the total number of infections to 1,238,635.

India has recorded 685 virus deaths in the past 24 hours, as well as 444 previously undeclared victims, bringing the death toll nationwide since the pandemic to 29,861.

Many states in India have begun to reset the blockades as health authorities struggle to trace the transmissions.

Crown of DelhiIndia has the third largest number of coronavirus cases in the world after the United States and Brazil [Danish Siddiqui /Reuters]

Hello Usaid Siddiqui in Doha taking over from my colleague Kate Mayberry.

05:00 GMT – Australia warns of a record decline in the economy

Australia says its economy is likely to decline at its fastest pace in history in the second quarter.

Officials predict that gross domestic product (GDP) will decline by 7% in the three months ended June, leaving Australia in its first recession in 30 years. The economy shrank 0.3 percent in the first quarter.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg also predicts a record budget deficit as the government increases spending to keep the economy and people at work moving forward.

03:50 GMT – Papua New Guinea asks for WHO help for the outbreak

Papua New Guinea asked WHO for help by citing a “high likelihood of greater community transmission”. He asked WHO to distribute emergency medical teams for an initial period of one month.

The NPC is one of the poorest countries in the Pacific and has limited medical resources. He currently has 30 cases of COVID-19, compared to 11 on Sunday. Most of the affected people are health workers.

National pandemic response controller David Manning said WHO was mobilizing international medical teams to deploy in the country. Manning said tests were limited beyond the capital of Port Moresby.

03:30 GMT – China reports 22 new cases, most of them in Xinjiang

The Chinese National Health Commission has reported 22 new coronavirus cases on the mainland, most of which are in the far west region of Xinjiang, where mass testing is ongoing.

03:00 GMT – China offers a $ 1 billion loan for access to vaccines in Latin America

China will offer a $ 1 billion loan to make available any coronavirus vaccine that is being developed for Latin American and Caribbean countries.

The Mexican foreign ministry says that China has promised in a virtual meeting.

02:30 GMT – California overtakes New York in coronavirus cases

California has passed New York to record the largest number of coronavirus cases in any state in the United States.

Health officials say the total state workload is now 413,576, about 4,700 more cases than in New York.

California’s death toll remains much lower, however. It has recorded 7,870 deaths since the start of the pandemic, compared with 25,068 in New York.

01:30 GMT – Other records collapse in South America

Brazil and Argentina both recorded new daily records for coronavirus cases.

Brazil confirmed 67,860 cases on Wednesday, while Argentina recorded 5,782 cases. Both countries also reported more deaths from the disease, while Peru added 3,688 previously uncounted people to the death toll, bringing the total to 17,455.

Meanwhile, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has not yet rocked the virus, which he once called nothing but a “small flu”.

A Wednesday test – his third – showed he still had COVID-19.

00:15 GMT – The South Korean economy in recession due to the collapse of exports

South Korea went into recession after exports registered theirs the worst decline since 1963. The economy declined 3.3 percent in the three months ending June, compared to the previous quarter.

Exports account for 40 percent of the South Korean economy and plunged 16.6 percent.

However, Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki expressed an optimistic note. He says that public spending, cash dispensations and a slowed pandemic could help resume growth.

South Korea

Containers in the port of Busan, South Korea, on 13 May 2020 [File: Yonhap via EPA]

00:00 GMT – Final arc? The UK warns of theatrical closures after the blockade

A UK parliamentary commission on art and culture says the coronavirus blockade has pushed British theater to the brink of collapse.

The committee estimates that over 15,000 theatrical performances were canceled in the first 12 weeks of the blockade that began on March 23rd and that they caused total losses to ÂŁ 603 million ($ 768 million).

The United Kingdom has around 1,100 theaters from London’s West End to small cities across the country.

maintenance and facilities at Manchester's Palace Theater, conducts a maintenance check on the auditorium on June 19, 2020 [Oli Scarff/AFP]" src="" border="0" alt="UK theater" />

Steve Clarkson, Head of Maintenance and Facilities at Manchester’s Palace Theater, conducts a maintenance check on the auditorium on June 19 [File: Oli Scarff/AFP]

Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. I am Kate Mayberry in Kuala Lumpur.

Read all yesterday’s updates (22 July) Here.

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