Exlog Global is continually monitoring local media and government sources to provide global security managers with the intelligence they need to keep their employees safe while ensuring business continuity. We are committed to providing awareness and transparency to our clients, employees, and partners regarding the spread of the novel coronavirus and its global impact.

 How many cases of COVID-19 have been reported? 

As of Nov. 30, there were more than 262,440,676 confirmed cases of COVID-19 worldwide and more than 5,212,252 deaths. 

How have new virus variants changed the threat landscape?

A new variant—named Omicron by the WHO—was detected in South Africa on Nov. 9. Since then, the variant has spread to 17 countries across five continents, raising concerns of higher transmissibility rates and increased risk of reinfection. The WHO classified Omicron as a variant of concern (VOC) on Nov. 26, prompting travel restrictions and enhanced COVID-19 protocols in numerous countries. According to preliminary research, Omicron could spread faster than Delta – the most contagious variant currently known. The strain was detected in at least seven out of South Africa’s nine provinces two weeks following its discovery, demonstrating advantages in transmissibility over Delta. There is limited information to suggest Omicron’s symptoms could be different or more severe than those from other variants. Medical professionals in South Africa claimed that the initially reported infections have been mild and have not required hospitalizations. 

Omicron has sparked global concern due to a record number of mutations affecting its spike protein; approximately 50 mutations have been observed across its genome, compared to just 20 discovered in Delta. While several of those mutations were recognized from other VOCs, none of the known strains carry a combination of these mutations. A high number of changes in the spike protein could make it less recognizable to immune system proteins, suggesting that Omicron could be significantly resistant to antibodies that are circulating in individuals who have recovered from COVID-19 or have been vaccinated with mRNA vaccines. Further studies are underway to determine Omicron’s transmissibility rate, the gravity of symptoms, the effectiveness of treatments, and the performance of vaccines.   

Notable Travel Developments 

  •  Travel from Southern Africa Restricted Globally – Following the emergence of the Omicron variant, countries worldwide have begun restricting travel from southern African countries with documented cases of Omicron, similar to the response to the Delta variant in May 2021. Many countries have restricted travel from specific countries in the region, often including some combination of South Africa, Botswana, Eswatini Lesotho, Angola, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. As travel restrictions hinge upon the discretion of individual countries, there have been varying degrees of responses, ranging from as mild as additional entry requirements to as severe as blanket entry bans. The most common governmental response so far has been restricting the entry of foreign nationals arriving from the aforementioned countries, usually exempting only their own citizens and permanent residents. Due to the dynamic nature of travel during COVID-19, it is impossible to predict what measures individual countries put in place to safeguard their populations against Omicron as it presents in new areas across the globe. Though Omicron was initially detected in Africa, a rapid spread of the variant could lead to a broad range of new travel restrictions as is already becoming apparent in the reactions of some more cautious nations. 

Country Daily New Cases (7-day avg.) Total Cases Total Deaths
US 78,416 48,440,107 778,653
Germany 58,044 5,839,795 101,350
UK 43,198 10,245,244 145,253
Russia 33,031 9,468,640 269,900
France 29,763 7,731,371 119,997
Turkey 24,852 8,772,342 76,635
Poland 23,314 3,540,061 83,583
Netherlands 22,306 2,662,247 19,798
Belgium 17,798 1,749,469 26,966
Vietnam 17,039 1,238,082 25,252
Czechia 16,330 2,150,042 33,069
Ukraine 13,371 3,606,622 91,268
Italy 11,957 5,015,790 133,739
Austria 11,627 1,159,995 12,492
Slovakia 11,163 1,170,200 14,418
Hungary 10,146 1,103,108 34,521
Brazil 9,268 22,084,749 614,376

 Countries Averaging >9,000 New COVID-19 Cases Daily (Source: JHU & European CDC/Our World in Data) 

Week-by-Week Change in Confirmed COVID-19 Cases (Source: European CDC/Our World in Data)