Press Conference by Health Superintendent Prof. Charmaine Gauci (14th May, 1230)
Seven further persons have recovered from coronavirus infection, taking this tally to 443.
Yesterday a record of 1321 tests were carried out, resulting in 14 positive cases, taking the total to 522. This means there are currently 73 active cases. These include four healthcare workers, three employed at Mater Dei, the other employed at St Vincent de Paule. Despite this news, Prof Gauci insisted that health protocols at Malta’s hospitals were of the highest rigorous standards.
Random testing at Karin Grech Hospital has identified two new cases in this location, including a Sudanese 23-year old man who was undergoing rehabilitation.
The other seven case were defined as ‘sporadic’, with Prof Gauci saying they were not linked with other cases. Two were identified in testing prior to be granted access to hospital.
Despite this spike, Prof Gauci saw no need for alarm, insisting that authorities will not roll back measures because of one spike, but averages over a particular period of time are taken into consideration.
MALTA-24: LOCAL NEWS
Tourism operators think it will take 2 to 5 years to return to 2019 levels – EY survey
The vast majority of participants in an EY Malta survey said they expect 2020 to be significantly loss-making and project virtually no meaningful levels of occupancy or revenues for the rest of the year.
Participants of the Covid-19 perception survey included key executives from some of the major 3 – 5-star hotels, hotel chains and boutique hotels.
Most of the respondents said they expect a material risk of the crisis prolonging well into 2021.
They generally expect a meaningful recovery to take between 2 – 5 years before returning to 2019 levels.
There was unanimous response that all reservations until the end of June 2020 were either cancelled or deferred. Similarly, bookings for the rest of the season are being cancelled or postponed gradually
There are significant concerns that the recovery will be slow and difficult, while uncertainty around the duration of the pandemic, availability of a vaccine, and changes in consumer behaviour will exacerbate the matter.
Majority of Maltese Premier League clubs call for ‘immediate termination’ of football season
A majority of Premier League football clubs have called for the immediate termination of the football season in a letter to Sports Parliamentary Secretary Clifton Grima.
The letter penned by the Malta Premier League Standing Committee cited the already precarious financial situation clubs are in as a result of COVID-19 restrictions on football and how they cannot wait any longer for a decision by the Malta Football Association.
The standing committee had already made its position known to the MFA.
According to the standing committee, in a vote taken by all Premier League clubs, 10 clubs voted in favour of terminating the league, while three clubs – Birkirkara, Gzira and Valletta – voted against. League leaders Floriana abstained.
The Malta Business Weekly leads with the death of Prof. Aaron Casha, the sixth victim of the coronavirus in Malta. The 53-year-old was consultant cardiothoracic surgeon and an Academic at the Department of Anatomy.
The Independent says that there has been a stream of tributes from family, friends, and colleagues to Prof. Aaron Casha who died of Covid-19 this week. The paper says that there are still 66 active cases.
The Times speaks to Dr Marylin Casha, the wife of the Covid-19 patient who died on Tuesday night. She said that her husband had been in a coma for a year and that she is at peace because she did everything to keep him alive.
L-Orizzont quotes Hannah Casha, one of the daughters of Prof Aaorn Casha, who wrote on social media that her father has finally ended his battle for life after passing away from the coronavirus.
In-Nazzjon reports that Malta dropped 12 places on the Global Financial Centres Index in March, ranking 107th among 108 reviewed countries. The paper says this is the worst result in ten years.
Business Today carries an interview with the chairman of association of iGaming companies, Enrico Bradamante who wanted that a change in attitude towards illegal gambling in Sweden could affect the gaming sector in Malta.
The Malta Business Weekly says that Premier Capital plc has posted a €28 million pre- tax profit in 2019, an increase of €5 million from the year before. The Maltese company is the Developmental Licencee for McDonald’s in six European markets.
The Times quotes a letter by the government to the European Commission for Democracy which said that high-ranking officials will start being appointed by the Cabinet instead of the Prime Minister alone.
In-Nazzjon quotes Opposition spokesperson for Energy Ryan Callus who said that diesel prices in Malta are the highest in Europe while petrol prices are the second-highest. The Nationalist Party is calling for a 30-cent reduction in fuels.
The Independent reports on an announcement by Education Minister Owen Bonnici about the setting up of a think-tank on the future of education. The seven-member team does not include teachers or students.
Business Today says that the Chamber of SMEs presented a series of proposals to the government to help stimulate the economy. Among the recommendations, the Chamber is proposing a ‘buy local’ drive.
L-Orizzont carries a report by the Chamber for SMEs which found that businesses that returned to trade last week did not make much sales. The Chamber is proposing a national campaign to support local retailers.
The Malta Business Weekly reports that the winner of this year’s Donatello film awards used the services of Maltese media production company Stargate Studios for its visual effects.
L-Orizzont reports on the resignation of the Catholic bishop of Cincinnati, Ohio, over the handling of a priest charged with sexual abuse. The paper says this is the first resignation since new procedures were introduced by the Vatican a year ago.
In-Nazzjon says that Opposition Leader Adrian Delia has written to the Auditor General urging him to follow up on a report by the Commissioner for Standards in Public Life and investigate claims of misuse of public funds by ministers.
The Times of Malta‘s Editorial notes that at the beginning of the outbreak, governments in Europe were lukewarm on the subject of masks for the general public. Yet as people start returning to work, despite the lack of a vaccine, masks are being encouraged as a critical means of containing the virus. Along with hand-washing and social distancing, masks are now being promoted as a core response to the pandemic. In this context, the Editor calls on political leaders to set the example and wear masks in public appearances.
Business Today makes the case for teleworking to become standard once the pandemic is over. Many were concerned on how telework would function, but for those organisations that have until now shunned teleworking because of unfounded fears, misinformation, lack of knowledge or a lack of investment, now is the time to assess the current situation and determine how this experience can be improved upon. A longer- term approach will have to consider the investment required in equipment such as laptops, internet services at the homes of employees and servers that will be required to ensure maximum efficiency and standardisation.
The Independent follows on Editorials taken up yesterday by two English-language newspapers analysing the appointment of a new Political Commissioner.
The Editor argues that the new police chief must command the respect of those serving under him or her and must have the courage to resist political interference. Under new leadership, the force must have the courage to take action even in the most politically sensitive and controversial cases. The force cannot be reluctant in the face of damning reports and accusations of wrongdoing and possible criminal acts levelled at politicians.
L-Orizzont recalls that yesterday marks two months since the closure of schools in Malta following the onset in the pandemic and welcomes efforts made by educational authorities as well as educators and their representatives to continue to provide online learning to students.
In-Nazzjon calls for proper investigations on some of the scandals that the country has witnessed in recent times, ranging from the powerstation to the Police corps. The Editor argues that the new Prime Minister has not learnt any lessons from past experience and is following on the footsteps of his predecessor.
New study shows Coronavirus could remain in the air for several minutes after talking
Droplets generated by people talking while infected with the novel coronavirus could linger in the air for several minutes, potentially triggering new infections, according to researchers.
A new estimate by researchers at the National Institutes of Health and the University of Pennsylvania finds that talking loudly for one minute in a confined space could generate at least 1,000 “speech droplets” containing Covid-19 particles.
Those droplets could remain in the air for more than eight minutes, according to the study published Tuesday in the open-access journal PNAS.
According to other research, that could be enough to generate an infection if someone inhaled them.
To conduct the experiment, the researchers had a person repeat the phrase “stay healthy” into a port connected to an enclosure, simulating a closed, stagnant air environment.
EU Corner – by Comuniq.EU
EU seeks new revenue sources to finance economic recovery
The European Union executive will ask member states to allocate new sources of revenue to the EU’s long-term budget to help finance an economic recovery after the coronavirus pandemic, its head said on Wednesday.
In a draft resolution, to be voted on later this week, the European parliament had threatened to withhold its approval for the upcoming seven-year EU spending plan unless governments dedicate new tax streams to it.
The EU does not have the power to impose taxes, but governments can agree to permanently allocate some of their revenue streams to the EU, as they have with customs duties and sugar levies and a slice of national value-added tax.
These revenues, along with national contributions, are called own resources and make up the trillion-dollar seven-year EU budget, the Multi-annual Financial Framework (MFF).
For a Fact-Checked Aggregated Service of CoVid-19 related information, please visit: https://corporatedispatch.com/category/coronavirus/
111 – For those who feel symptoms of COVID-19 or who wish further information
21411 411 – For those in mandatory quarantine who require provisions of food and medicine
1772 – For those who are feeling lonely.
153 – For those who require information about the financial measures administered by the Department for Social Security.
144 – For those who require information about the financial measures administered by Malta Enterprise.
2204 2200 – For Maltese residents who were caught in one of the high-risk countries and wish to return to Malta
25981000 – For those who have questions about the educational sector and the impact of the coronavirus
21692447– For hoteliers and tourists who have questions about the announced measures.
This daily update bulletin is being compiled for the Chamber of Advocates by CI Consulta from Corporate ID Group. CI Consulta delivers policy research and analysis, evaluations and impact assessments up to policy implementation and integration.