Europe's worst affected country by COVID-19 outbreak

Italy is by far the European country worst affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. It has also been a point of contagion with many cases in other countries involving people who returned home after travelling in infection-hit areas of northern Italy.

Let's take a look at the adverse impact of the novel virus on the country: 

Death toll rises

The death toll from Italy’s coronavirus outbreak has risen to 52, as the number of confirmed cases in Europe’s worst-hit country rose above 2000.


Empty tourist spots

In photo: People walking on an almost empty Piazza del Duomo in central Milan, on February 27, 2020, amid fears over the spread of the novel Coronavirus.

Italy has urged tourists not to be spooked by the novel coronavirus.


Hotels hit

Hotel bookings have slumped and nearly a dozen cities in the north are in lockdown due to the virus outbreak.

Twelve regions have reported at least one case of the virus, including Sicily at the country's southern tip.

Hotel bookings in the northern city of Milan have plummeted to 20 per cent, compared with nearly 90 per cent normally at this time of year.

In Rome far from the virus hotspots more than 50 per cent of bookings have been cancelled until the end of March, hotel association Federalberghi said.


Movement restricted

The government has stopped all movement in and out of 11 towns in two regions in the north in a bid to stop the contagion spreading.



Widespread misinformation

As alarm grows, Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio condemned "false reports circulating abroad" about panic in the country, saying they were doing "more damage" than the virus itself.

Schools and Universities have also been closed due to the outbreak of the deadly virus.


Matches scrapped

Authorities have scrapped major league soccer matches in the areas stricken by the deadly virus.

However, some football matches and practice sessions for the domestic league Serie A are still being conducted behind closed doors.



Carnival cancelled

Authorities have called off the Venice Carnival attended by thousands of revellers.

Milan’s Salone del Mobile, the largest furniture fair in the world, has also been postponed.