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Summary, 13.05.2020 - The SST tried to get money to strengthen pandemic-readiness, but was rejected.

TODAY'S BULLETS

  1. The Danish Health Authority have the last two years been trying to get more money from the politicians to strengthen the readiness against, among other things, infectious diseases. The answer has been no, and the agency hasn’t received a single krone.

  2. Germany informs that they are willing to open the borders to Denmark the 15th of May if they can reach an agreement with the Danish government: “(…) we have last evening agreed with the Danish government that we will, in unity, put down a time (for reopening, ed.). The Danish government is currently aligning this move with their other neighbouring countries because they want to complete this as a package with several countries,” says the Minister of Interior, Horst Seehofer.

  3. Despite the information from the German authorities regarding a potential reopening of the border to Denmark, the Minister of Justice Nick Hækkerup said today to the Parliament that the government doesn’t want to risk opening up the borders too early.

  4. The Minister of Justice is open for allowing tourists with rental contracts to a Danish summerhouse or camping site to cross the border for vacation. “I actually think that is a sensible approach,” he said.

  5. The European Commission wants to remove restrictions on travels, since the pandemic has topped for now in Europe, and has proposed a new plan, where the borders should be open gradually, and in a fashion so borders between countries with the same level of infection can reopen.

  6. The recommendations for children’s’ playdates have been removed by the Danish Health Authority. Kids are now ‘allowed’ to play several children at once and make sleeping dates with their friends. Children should still preferably play outside, but it is okay to e.g. play computer indoor again.

  7. New guidelines for the reopening of childcare institutions, schools and other educational institutions have been published by the Ministry of Children and Education. The guidelines make it clear that when the eldest pupils show up from the 18th of May, the schools have to use shifted meeting hours and shifted breaks. Any absence will be noted, but not reported to the municipality council.

  8. Those living in homes for people with special needs (disabilities, mental issues etc.) will now again be allowed visits from one to two fixed visitors but must generally take place outside.

The white tents around the country are part of the Danish pandemic-readiness / Foto: Claus bech © Scanpix

POLITICS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • The Danish Health Authority have the last two years been trying to get more money from the politicians to strengthen the readiness against, among other things, infectious diseases. The agency asked for 162.9 million kroner from this year and the next three years, and for 12 million kroner to ensure staff that could handle health crises. The answer has been no, and the agency hasn’t received a single krone.

  • Germany informs that they are willing to open the borders to Denmark the 15th of May if they can reach an agreement with the Danish government: “(…) we have last evening agreed with the Danish government that we will, in unity, put down a time (for reopening, ed.). The Danish government is currently aligning this move with their other neighbouring countries because they want to complete this as a package with several countries,” says the Minister of Interior, Horst Seehofer. The German government also wants free travelling inside the EU from the 15th of June. Horst Seehofer also informs that the country will open the borders on Friday to France, Switzerland and Austria.

  • Despite the information from the German authorities regarding a potential reopening of the border to Denmark, the Minister of Justice Nick Hækkerup said today to the Parliament that the government doesn’t want to risk opening up the borders too early: “We cannot forget, that if we reopen the borders too early, we risk losing the positive development we’ve had in Denmark, so parts of the reopening in the worst case will have to be rolled back again, or that our healthcare system gets under pressure,” he said.

  • The Minister of Justice is open for allowing tourists with rental contracts to a Danish summerhouse or camping site to cross the border for vacation. “I actually think that is a sensible approach,” he said in the Parliament, after having been asked about this possible solution by Ulla Tørnæs, Venstre.

  • The European Commission wants to remove restrictions on travels, since the pandemic has topped for now in Europe, and has proposed a new plan, where the borders should be open gradually, and in a fashion so borders between countries with the same level of infection can reopen. The plan also contains guidelines on how to boost tourism again, including guidelines on how to decorate hotels in a way to avoid the spread of infection. “Millions of jobs are dependant on the tourism, and it is often in areas where there is not a lot of other industry,” says the European Commissioner Margrethe Vestager.

  • The recommendations for children’s’ playdates have been removed by the Danish Health Authority. Kids are now ‘allowed’ to play several children at once and make sleeping dates with their friends. Children should still preferably play outside, but it is okay to e.g. play computer indoor again.

  • New guidelines for the reopening of childcare institutions, schools and other educational institutions have been published by the Ministry of Children and Education. The guidelines make it clear that when the eldest pupils show up from the 18th of May, the schools have to use shifted meeting hours and shifted breaks. The various institutions are encouraged to not let the children gather in too large groups, and also make it clear, that all students will be given absence if not showing up. Some pupils may be given permission to still receive remote teaching, but if this permission is not given, and the pupil stays away, the absence will be noted. The absence during phase 2 will, however, not be reported to the municipality council, and there won’t be any deductions in the family allowance due to absence. The standard of the teaching might also be sub-par since the teaching is still emergency state-teaching.

  • Those living in homes for people with special needs (disabilities, mental issues etc.) will now again be allowed visits from one to two fixed visitors but must generally take place outside. The various institutions must be able to offer visits within seven days from the 13th of May.

  • It will be quite a while before the guarantee on treatments will return, says the Minister of Health Magnus Heunicke to the Parliament. This is despite the agreement between the government and Danish Regions regarding that private clinics and hospitals must help to lower the number of patients that needs to be treated.

  • Several parties want to include cultural life in the second phase of the reopening. The entire blue block in the Parliament, as well as De Radikale, wants to do this. “It is difficult to explain to people that it is okay to eat from a buffet when in a shopping mall, but not okay to go to a museum,” says the party leader of De Radikale Morten Østergaard. The political spokesman on Culture for Venstre, Britt Bager, says: “We have to look at the cultural institutions that haven’t been allowed to open. Museums, zoos and amusement parks.

  • Venstre wants to boost the economy by giving the Danes taxation relief for 4.5 billion kroner, by, among other things, removing the PSO-fee on the electricity bill. This would, on average, free more than 3.000 kroner for a standard family. This money should then be used on consumption, says party leader Jakob Ellemann-Jensen.

  • The Danish unemployment system can collapse, if the current requirement of having the obligatory CV-conversation within two weeks of having reported unemployed is maintained once the unemployment system is opened up, and around 50.000 unemployed needs to be treated. Danske A-Kasser is, therefore, asking for a temporary dispensation for this time requirement. 3F’s unemployment fund is supporting this proposal.

  • The Minister of Immigration and Integration, Mattias Tesfaye, wants to enter into dialogue with sectors where ethnical minorities make out a large portion of the employees, with the intention of informing about the risk of infection with coronavirus.

HEALTH-RELATED INFORMATION

  • 10.667 have tested positive, 76 more than yesterday (Expect large dark numbers since we haven't been testing everyone with symptoms from the start, ed.).

  • 164 are hospitalized with corona-virus, 13 less than yesterday.

  • Of those 164 are 37 in intensive care, 6 less than yesterday.

  • Of those 37 are 32 in respirators, the same as yesterday.

  • 533 Corona-infected residents in Denmark have died, 6 more than yesterday.

  • 345.712 have been tested for corona-virus (+11.452), with 10.667 positives (3.08 % positives), a drop of 0.09 %-point from yesterday (We are testing more, so we are getting closer to the real percentage of infected people in the society)

  • 8663 are reported as healthy again, after having been hospitalized with corona-virus, 83 more than yesterday.

  • Denmark is part of a global study on psychological health, which will examine the mental health during the corona-pandemic in more than 60 countries. The data will be collected now, half a year after the end of the crisis, and then again one year after. Then the data will be compared across populations.

OTHER NEWS

  • The revenue of restaurants and hotels has dropped by 53 % in March according to numbers from Statistics Denmark.

  • Every fourth leader in private companies say that their employees have been less productive working from home, according to a new survey made by the worker’s union The Leaders (Lederne). On the other hand, though, has 78 % answered that they have experienced that the period of working from home has been functioning well or very well. Almost as many also say that they have employees who are very eager to return physically to their work.

  • Significantly fewer house owners and companies asked for offers on new housing loans in April. 16.770 offers on mortgage loans were given in April, from which 5.500 of those were for housing purchases. This is a drop of 33 % compared to the average per month for the last 12 months. The numbers come from Finans Danmark, an interest organisation for the Danish finance sector.

  • The travel company TUI is warning that they will have to cut down their expenditures with 30 %, after having come out of Q2 2020 with a deficit of 5.5 billion kroner. This will have an impact on 8.000 jobs, which will either be cut away or not be offered.

  • Mærsk is expecting a drop of 20-25 % of their turnaround in the transport-sector alone in Q2 2020, due to the corona-crisis.

  • Billund Airport has warned of the need to fire 270 annual contracts by the 31st of May 2020. This need comes due to the massive descent in passengers because of the corona-crisis. “It is sad that covid-19 is forcing us into a situation where we have to say goodbye to so many skilled employees. It is an unreal situation. It hurts, but we are hoping that several of the employees are seeking to come back when the traffic turns around, and we have to adjust upwards again,” says the administrative director for the airport, Jan Hessellund.

  • SAS will demand that all passengers older than 6 years of age are wearing facial masks on their planes. The new guidelines will be in effect from Monday the 18th of May until the end of August.

  • Norwegian is implementing a demand that passengers must wear facial masks onboard their planes, just like SAS. The requirement will enter into effect from next week. Norwegian does currently only fly internally in Norway and doesn’t have any routes to and from Denmark or elsewhere.

  • 2.3 million kroner has been collected in five days to the corona-closed aquarium Den Blå Planet. “We want to say thank you so much for all the support that has been given to us. Small as big donations make a huge difference in a very difficult time,” says the aquarium’s director Jon Diderichsen.



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