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Coronavirus

Japan's key sectors prepare for virus emergency

Banks and utilities act now to keep needed services up and running

Tokyo Gas' cogeneration equipment in the basement of a building in Tokyo.

TOKYO -- Japanese companies are moving to prevent sectors vital to modern society from shutting down if the government declares an emergency over the coronavirus pandemic.

Severe restrictions on economic activities in such major metropolitan areas as Tokyo and Osaka due to a one-month emergency declaration would lead to losses of 4 trillion to 6 trillion yen ($37 billion to $55 billion), estimates the Japan Center for Economic Research. The impact would be even greater if limits on people's movements are imposed. Corporations are trying to balance the need to keep social infrastructure running and to keep their workers safe.

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