As the number of coronavirus infections grew exponentially in Europe and North America in March, restrictive public health measures to stave off a worsening pandemic were put in place.

They included stay-at-home orders, which were first issued in Italy and then in rapid succession in most other countries around the world.

With their populations ordered to stay home, schools, offices and factories closed; road traffic circulation dwindled to a minimum; and airlines have reduced scheduled flights by 60% to 95%.

By Robert Hamwey, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development