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Update – 10/05/2020

  • One person has died from Covid-19, a woman aged 73 at the Nicosia Hospital ICU with serious underlying conditions, but Covid-19 was determined to be the final cause of death. This brings the total number of deaths of patients with Coronavirus to 22. For 16 of those, Covid-19 was found to be the final cause of death; 11 men and five women of average age 71 years. According to the Health Ministry, another six have tested positive to the virus from 1393 tests, raising the total to 898 (including ten at the British Bases).
  • The House finance committee is expected to convene on Monday via teleconference to discuss a new government package to mitigate the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the economy. The new package approved last week by the cabinet, concerns state guarantees amounting to €1.5bn for loans to business and the self-employed and direct grants to very small businesses and the self-employed. It also includes a bill on tax incentives to real estate owners to reduce rent to businesses who, as well as a bill for government guarantees for 18-month credit vouchers for prepaid trips which have been cancelled due to the Covid-19 outbreak. The meeting will start at 9am with the Finance Minister Constantinos Petrides briefing the committee members on the new bills.
  • Transport Minister Yiannis Karousos said in an interview to Phileleftheros published on Saturday that the most important thing for his ministry is to restore Cyprus’ connectivity as it is fundamental for restarting the economy. He added that there have been no cutbacks in funding for public works due to the crisis but said that the timeline for implementation of projects in its pipeline is being challenged.
    • How will airports reoperate?
    • We need to look at the chain. Say there will be flights; what needs to be done? Will the passenger need to have undergone the Coronavirus test 72 hours in advance? Will she take the test upon arrival? Will we take the temperature of each passenger or will we use thermal cameras? Will we only take samples? Will aircraft capacity be at 50% or 66%? Will passengers be offered masks and gloves on the plane? What additional infrastructure do we need and how do we put them in place? From which countries will we accept flights and by what criteria? Will we require testing from some countries and not from others? Moreover, some countries’ policy will be to delay lifting restrictions on flights to boost domestic tourism. We want tourists from those countries, but we too want domestic tourism. We will have a detailed action plan in 15 days. Flights need to resume in early or mid-June. Decisions should not be prohibitive but need to be the right ones, which is why the contribution of scientists is important. It is important to inform the agencies, airlines, travel agents and citizens in a timely manner of our plan with all the details, the dates, the scenarios. They should be informed early on that if all goes well, so and so will happen in June, in July, in August.
  • Police booked 117 people from 6 pm on Saturday until 6 am on Sunday for violating the stay at home order compared to 105 the night before. Police carried out a total of 3336 checks overnight to vehicles and pedestrians.
  • The majority of Cypriots agree with most of the measures the government has taken against the spread of Covid-19 but not so much with the opening of schools, it was reported on Sunday. Citing the results of an online poll carried out by RetailZoom on its behalf, daily Politis reports that respondents were also satisfied by the performance of the police. In total 1,008 people responded to an online survey carried out by RetailZoom, between May 6 and 7. Politis’ subscribers and readers but also social media users took part in the survey. The gender and age results were weighted to represent the population of people aged 18 and over. According to the first part of the survey, 79 per cent of respondents said they agreed with the government measures taken against the spread of coronavirus. As regards the first round of relaxations, introduced last Monday, 65 per cent said they found the new measures neither too strict nor too loose. Six in 10 said, however, said that their view of the government’s actions during this period would not affect their decision as regards next year’s parliamentary elections. The majority of respondents – 72 per cent – said they were not satisfied by the parliament’s work during the pandemic, while 55 per cent said they were not that satisfied or indeed satisfied at all by the performance of civil servants. Four in 10 said that if necessary, civil servants’ salaries had to be slashed, while 49 per cent said they did not agree with such a move. Almost seven in 10 said they were satisfied by the police performance, while nine per cent said police carried out their duties “in an unacceptable way.” As regards employment, 32 per cent said they continue to go to their workplace, 27 per cent said they work from home, 17 per cent said they combine both, 13 per cent said are still furloughed while 11 per cent said they were now unemployed. Of those who said they go to work or combine work at home and the office, 32 per cent believe that the biggest problem they face is the safety conditions at their workplace, while for 31 per cent, a very serious problem was who would take care of their children. Another 17 per cent expressed concerns over the survival of the company in which they work. The majority, 86 per cent, said they never lied in order to be allowed out during the movement restrictions whereas 3 per cent admitted to sometimes lying, 8 per cent said they did it but rarely, and 1 per cent said they lied on numerous occasions to go out. Two per cent did not respond to the question. Fifty-two per cent of the respondents said they disagreed with the decision to reopen schools.

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