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Coronavirus

Cardboard shields Japan's workers where telework is not an option

Banks and train operators stress over safety as coronavirus cases swell

Kansai Mirai Bank's credit analysis division installed cardboard dividers in its office as an anti-coronavirus measure. (Photo by Shogo Nakatani)

OSAKA -- When 15 employees in the credit risk analysis division at Kansai Mirai Bank returned to their downtown Osaka office for the first time in three months on July 10, they sat at desks separated by cardboard partitions.

The department, which is responsible for lending decisions, plays an especially important role now that the coronavirus has left many customers strapped for cash. Some of its nearly 50 employees had been transferred to the bank's head office elsewhere in Osaka, to ensure that the entire segment would not be taken out of commission should someone catch the virus, and were recently brought back.

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