24 Apr Did Australia’s China-scepticism prepare it for Covid-19? – Spectator
In the Spectator USA, Director of the British Foreign Policy Group, Sophia Gaston, explores whether Australia’s innate scepticism over China has helped prepare it for the Covid-19 pandemic.
“As the West struggles through the eye of the coronavirus storm, it is difficult not to cast our eyes across the world and compare our fate with that of our friends and allies. One nation in particular stands out — Australia — seemingly on course yet again to assume its role as ‘The Lucky Country’.
It’s tasteless to say, but Australia has had ‘a good crisis’ — it’s one of the few nations to emerge relatively unscathed from the pandemic’s deadly grip and has recorded just 75 deaths so far. Now Sydney’s famous beaches are re-opening this week, and visitor restrictions on care homes are being relaxed. Australia’s performance is especially intriguing given its geographic proximity to Asia.
When I was visiting in January, the specter of coronavirus was already looming on the horizon, with a degree of panic forming around the disease’s potential impact on Chinese tourism and higher education. The air was still choked with smoke from the devastating bushfires, which had torn through the South East over Christmas.”
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