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Virus: entry into force of the European health pass, hope for tourism


covid19: entry into force of the European health pass, hope for tourism

Virus: entry into force of the European health pass, hope for tourism

The EU hopes to revive a tourism frozen by the coronavirus pandemic with a health pass from this Thursday, July 1st for travelers, despite uneven vaccination campaigns and the threat of the Delta variant.

Vaccinated, cured or tested negative for Covid-19, it will be necessary from this Thursday to show white paw to cross the European borders, using the new "health pass" now essential to travel in 33 countries of the Old Continent, even if the rules vary according to the destinations and the countries of origin.

This precious sesame should give a breath of fresh air to the tourism industry, brought to its knees by the pandemic: according to the UN, the collapse of international tourism could lead to a loss of more than 4,000 billion dollars for the world GDP over the years 2020 and 2021, or one and a half times the French GDP.

With vaccination rates uneven, with less than 1% of the population vaccinated in some countries and more than 60% elsewhere, the report of the united nationsConference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), published on Wednesday 30 June, notes that tourism losses are greater in developing countries.

Americans in Paris

  • In Paris, the first American tourists reinvested the places prized by foreign travelers: Montmartre, the Sacré-Cœur, the Eiffel Tower...
  • "It's amazing! We wanted to come back since last year but as the borders were closed (...) We're very, very happy to be here, it's like taking a bowl of culture and we really missed it," said Padmini Pyapali, an engineer among these "revenants".
  • The last restrictions jumped on Wednesday in France with the end of gauges in cinemas, restaurants or shops. For all events gathering more than 1,000 people including fairs, congresses and fairs now without gauge, the sanitary pass will be required.
  • But concerns are mounting about a possible fourth wave of Covid-19 after the summer, if vaccination continues to plateau, while the Delta variant already represents "20% of new diagnoses", according to French Health Minister Olivier Véran. Half of the population received a first dose (33.7 million).
  • Austria, where almost half of the approximately nine million inhabitants have already received at least one injection and a quarter are fully vaccinated, reopens its discotheques on Thursday and ends gauge restrictions for cultural and sporting events.

Disillusionment with the vaccine of the German CureVac

First identified in India, the much more contagious Delta variant is now present in at least 85 countries, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

And especially in Russia, which on Wednesday recorded a record number of daily deaths due to the coronavirus for the second day in a row, with 669 deaths in the last 24 hours.

In this context, President Vladimir Putin called on his fellow citizens who are hesitant to be vaccinated against the coronavirus to listen to "the experts" and not the rumours, during his annual televised mass. However, he was opposed to any national vaccination obligation.

The vaccination campaign, launched in December with a great deal of propaganda around Sputnik V, Moscow's flagship injection, has so far convinced only 23 of the 146 million Russians, against a background of widespread mistrust.

Russia is the European country most bereaved by Covid-19 with 134,545 deaths according to government figures and 270,000 deaths according to the statistics agency Rosstat, which has a broader definition.

Despite this surge in cases, the quarter-final of the Euro football (Switzerland-Spain), will be held on Friday in St. Petersburg, according to the organizers. This is at a time when some 300 Finnish fans who returned after attending the Euro in that city have tested positive.

The vaccine developed by the German laboratory CureVac is only 48% effective in preventing Covid-19, a much lower rate than other messenger RNA vaccines, which makes the future of this product already ordered en masse by the European Union uncertain.

Bangladesh confined

In Australia, faced with the Delta variant, Alice Springs, located in the huge desert hinterland, on Wednesday became the fifth city in the country to be confined while the population does not hide its anger at the slowness of the vaccination campaign.

And in Asia where the Delta variant is progressing, Thailand is preparing to reopen the paradise island of Phuket to international tourists on Thursday, while the kingdom

on Wednesday recorded its worst daily death toll since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic with 53 deaths.

Conversely, Bangladesh, a country of 168 million inhabitants also plagued by the spread of the Delta variant, is introducing a strict lockdown with the army and police having orders to arrest anyone leaving without a compelling reason.

In Hong Kong, the ban on all flights from the UK comes into force on Thursday. Japanese wishing to travel abroad will be able to have a vaccination passport from Thursday.

The pandemic has killed at least 3,940,888 people worldwide since the end of December 2019, according to an AFP assessment from official sources on Wednesday.