S&P Global Ratings on Thursday said that the coronavirus outbreak in China is disrupting the global technology sector as operations in the world’s largest tech manufacturing hub are threatened.

Health officials in China’s Hubei Province reported that 242 more people have died from coronavirus and nearly 15,000 fresh cases have been registered on Wednesday, the death count is reportedly the highest spike in a single day more than twice the previous record high.

The number of coronavirus infections cases has exceeded 44,000 with the total number of death count at 1,355.

“Our base case is that the virus will be contained globally in March 2020 (no new transmissions in April), allowing travel and other restrictions to be unwound by the middle of the second quarter,” an Asia economist of S&P Global Ratings said.

S&P said it has not taken any rating actions related to the outbreak.

The delay in reopening of the factories after the extended Lunar Year holidays has hit the hardware, electronic manufacturing services providers, and semiconductor companies, it said.

However, if the outbreak proves more difficult to contain, the effect on the tech sector could be extensive as lengthy factory shutdowns or significant underutilisation could materially lower the global output of tech components, subassemblies, or finished goods.

(With input from agencies)