The World Health Organisation WHO says the coronavirus outbreak is not yet pandemic, but a global public health emergency
Coronavirus has claimed 425 lives, with more than 20,000 reported cases in China and 158 cases outside that country.
WHO, which stated this at a news conference in Geneva, said the agency was hopeful that that the virus would be contained.
The UN agency acknowledged that it was challenging to contain the virus because of global mass movement.
It explained that the virus was currently considered to be an epidemic with multiple locations.
According to WHO, there is a “window of opportunity” to stop the deadly new coronavirus becoming a broader global crisis.
WHO Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said the steps China took to fight the virus at its epicentre were a good way of stopping its spread.
The praise comes as Chinese officials have been widely criticised for their initial handling of the outbreak.