The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a historic drop in demand for petroleum products. In addition to reduction of fuel use for air and sea transport, on-road passenger travel has been impacted as consumers are driving significantly shorter distances and less often.
Last quarter, in the early stages of the global COVID-19 outbreak, I was surveying Southeast Asia. At the time of my transit through Kuala Lumpur, AirAsia had recently suspended flights from mainland China, Macau, and Hong Kong. Though normally a carrier that promotes customer self-service, the airline was diverting all travellers from these locations to the check-in counters to undergo screening questions before being allowed to proceed; in fact, they were prohibited from using the automated-check-in machines as you can see in the photo below.
The Stockholm housing rental market has been mostly stable over the last several months, despite a steady increase in demand. Rental units are challenging to find in this near-zero vacancy market and houses are especially limited. For new assignees, there has been an increase in demand for employer-backed leases and this trend is expected to grow.
As of Feb 26, 2020, the number of confirmed cases of CoViD-19 has risen to 91 with 2 fatalities. The anxiety on the ground in Hong Kong is pervasive. In my neighborhood, for example, there was a recent Coronavirus fatality. For many residents in Hong Kong, present events are stirring memories from of our lives during SARS in 2003. I was young at the time and mostly recall the extended holidays and chatting with friends online, but the fear of older residents who lived through previous outbreaks is tangible.
Barcelona has 1.6 million residents and an annual influx of 30 million temporary residents. This excessive number of tourists has brought instability to the city’s housing market as many long-term rentals have turned into short-term furnished units to cater to demand.
In July of 2018, Russia changed its rule for foreign citizen registration. Previously, a foreign resident could register using their company address. The new rule no longer allows this and requires a home address.
Rideshare companies are having an impact in Jakarta, a city where traffic is ever present and getting around can be challenging. While it is common for expatriates to have a car and driver here, taxi and rideshare companies are innovating ways to capture expatriate clientele.
The government is enforcing strict policies to deal with the water crisis.