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27 Feb. 2021 | One year after Covid-19

Saturday 27-02-2021, it is exactly one year ago that the first corona case was diagnosed in the Netherlands. In order to combat the spread, many shops had to be closed, cafes and restaurants were closed and negative travel advice was issued, with all the consequences for the economy.  

We now know how the corona virus has affected our lives: hairdressers where until 03 march 2021 closed, eating out is not possible and we mainly rely on the Netherlands for traveling. All these restrictions mean that we have simply been able to spend less money, with major consequences for the Dutch economy. The Dutch economy shrank by 3.8 percent in 2020: the largest contraction ever recorded. The better-filled piggy banks also mean that less money is circulating in the economy, which of course leads to problems for companies. They see a decline in revenues, which is why they are quickly looking at ways to reduce costs.
This leads to a significant increase in the number of unemployed: from over a quarter of a million in the first quarter of 2020 to a peak of 419,000 in the third quarter. Although many companies and entrepreneurs are having a hard time, this is not yet reflected in the number of bankruptcies in the Netherlands. In fact, last year the curtain fell on 2,703 companies, the smallest number since 2000. The number of bankruptcies is therefore expected to increase this year as the support is reduced. (25-02-2021)


 

News until 15 May 2021

 Small entrepreneurs live below social assistance level

More and more small entrepreneurs are getting into trouble financially. At microfinance Qredits, they saw the number of applications from entrepreneurs for a bridging loan increase by 30 percent. The Institute for Small and Medium Enterprises registered 6,568 entrepreneurs with financial worries, five times as many as last summer. In the last quarter of 2020, almost half of the entrepreneurs (46 percent) earned less than social assistance benefits. Another 16 percent were above social assistance levels, but below the minimum wage. These hard figures have been collected by Het Financieele Dagblad. The Chamber of Commerce states that many entrepreneurs are in "survival mode" and that callers of Chamber of Commerce's Corona counter are more often angry. "The tone is hardening," said a spokesman. (04-03-2021)

 

lockdown extended until 21 April 2021 | Possible extension July 01

Almost all non-essential shops closed until 3 March 2021, (only pickup at the door is allowed, order online and pickup at the door) since 03 March you can make a reservation 4hrs upfront, only 2 customers per floor are allowed, max 10 min shopping and venues such as cinemas and theaters remain closed.

People with a contact profession, such as hairdressers, physiotherapists and beauticians, can work again from 3 March by reservation.

From 3 March hairdressers and other contact professions such as pedicures, beauticians, driving instructors and masseurs may reopen. This is subject to conditions: customers may only enter by appointment and must be asked about their possible complaints.

Sex workers, Amsterdam Red lights are excluded from this relaxation for contact professions. Physiotherapists, dentists and veterinarians, among others, were already open. (24-02-2021)

The Netherlands is expected to have to deal with "a considerable set of measures" until July.

Link: Routekaart coronamaatregelen

    •    Do not shake hands.
    •    Wash your hands often with soap, for at least twenty seconds.
    •    Avoid crowds and if that doesn't work, go elsewhere.
    •    Keep 1.5 meters distance from other people.
    •    Cough and sneeze in your elbow. 
 
- Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposureto the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:
Fever or chills
Cough
Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
Fatigue
Muscle or body aches
Headache
New loss of taste or smell
Sore throat
Congestion or runny nose
Nausea or vomiting
Diarrhea

The structure of SARS-CoV-2. Credit: Scientific Animations™. Photo: thepathologist.com

Check the corona figures

Link: | Worldometers


Do not travel abroad | 15 May 2021

The cabinet urgently advises not to travel abroad until 15 May 2021, unless it is really necessary.

 

Culture and amusement, parks

Transfer locations are closed. Think of amusement parks, casinos, cinemas, red light, theaters and other cultural institutions.
Libraries will remain open for book collection and return. Community centers remain open to vulnerable people.

 

 Shopping by appointment will be possible from 3 March | 10 min

That is in addition to the option to order and purchase something via click and collect. Retailers may receive customers who have signed up at least four hours in advance. A maximum of two customers may enter per floor. A visit lasts at least ten minutes to avoid contact between customers who quickly alternate, says the national government. Shopping by appointment will hopefully lead to a little more air for smaller entrepreneurs, Prime Minister Rutte said.

 

 Contact professions

People with a contact profession, such as hairdressers and beauticians, can work again per 3 March. People with a healthcare profession, such as dentists and physiotherapists, are working already.

 

Saunas, gyms and swimming pools will remain closed

Team sports are allowed again for young people and young adults up to and including the age of 26 from 3 March. They are allowed to sport again within their own club and in their own team.  During exercise, they do not have to keep a distance of five feet. Competitions are not allowed.
Furthermore, only outdoor sports are allowed, with a maximum of two people who can keep sufficient distance. The gyms remain closed.


Schools

In addition to the primary schools, which can open again from Monday 08-02-2021, the Netherlands will remain in lockdown until March 02-2021.  Secondary schools will remain closed at least until March 01-2021. While secondary schools and MBO institutions may reopen to a limited extent from next week 01 March, colleges and universities will remain closed. (24-02-2021)

 

Fewer guests at home

At home you can receive a maximum of 2 guest.

 

Hotels and catering

Hotels remain open, but are no longer allowed to serve their guests. Room service in the rooms is also no longer allowed. The other catering establishments, including cafes and restaurants, will remain closed. You can still pick up food and drinks from the catering industry.


Top sport continues

The top sports competitions, including the Eredivisie in football, may continue, but without an audience.  That was already the case.

 

Churches, mosques and places of worship

Places of worship such as churches and mosques will remain closed.

 

To travel

Public transport will continue to run, but is only intended for necessary journeys. For trips abroad, You are strongly advised not to book them until 15 May, travel only if they are strictly necessary. (23-03-2021)


Mandatory masks

From December 1: there is a national duty to mask in public indoor spaces such as shops, museums, restaurants and theaters. More about this will be announced by the cabinet shortly.


 Corona app | Events 2021 | Quick tests

A first trial event should take place in March 2021, where the government's new corona app will be tested. Outgoing Minister of Health Hugo de Jonge says in the Volkskrant newspaper that he wants to set up large-scale access tests for "events" and "theaters" afterwards.  "After pilots in March, we will start for the real thing in April, at first with limited capacity. In the meantime, we are arranging sufficient testing options and a law will be sent to Parliament in March." De Jonge mentions rapid tests or PCR tests as options for use.  In addition, the government has developed an app, called CoronaCheck, that will atellow visitors to show a negative test result at the entrance.  "We are one of the first countries in the West to try this, this way." (20-02-2020)

 

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2020

The increase in corona numbers continues

The RIVM reported 8,894 positive corona tests on Friday.  That is more than the average for the past seven days (6,861) and more than Thursday (8,793), when the highest number was reported in just over a month. (11-12-2020) 
 

More than 10 percent of the Dutch population is now protected

When 60 to 70 percent is immune, it is called herd immunity. More than 10 percent of the Dutch population is currently resistant to the virus. About two million Dutch people are currently protected against the corona virus, because they have been infected before.  RIVM director Jaap van Dissel announced this on Wednesday during a technical briefing in the Lower House. (9-12-2020)
 

It is really not going well with the infection figures, and also not in the hospitals, said Prime Minister Rutte.

According to the prime minister, we are at a crossroad. "Either together we ensure that the figures go in the right direction, or the figures continue to rise. Then I do not rule out that we have to take even stricter measures before Christmas." De Jonge (pub. Health) expects that the restrictive measures can only be partially released in the course of 2021.  "Until then, we have to be careful." (08-12-2020)

 

Possibly on the way to "third corona wave"

We may be heading for a third wave given the increasing number of infections. That's what Diederik Gommers, head of the intensive care department of Erasmus MC, said. It is difficult to provide an explanation for the increasing number of infections.  "Could it be because of Black Friday? Is it mobility? Are we not complying with the measures? Is it because of the cold? We don't know."  (8-12-2020)

 

Dutch government is considering special corona app with 'test passport'

The Ministry of Health is considering making a special app for the corona test. The app can be used to book a test, but can also contain a kind of certificate to prove that you have been tested negative. (30-11-2020)


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What else was in the news


Traveler

The Dutch government wants to oblige travelers arriving in the Netherlands from a corona risk area to demonstrate that they have been tested negative for the corona virus. That test must not be older than 48 hours. Minister Hugo de Jonge (Public Health) writes this in a letter to Parliament on Wednesday 18 nov 2020.  This should make it easier for people who travel from risk areas to the Netherlands for a necessary journey. In addition, De Jonge wants to have travelers from those areas tested five days after arriving in the Netherlands. This is expected to happen even if they have no complaints that indicate the corona virus.  In this way, people for whom it is 'really necessary' to travel (so not for a holiday or a family visit) do not have to be quarantined for as long after they have arrived in the Netherlands. By drawing up the rules, the government hopes that this can be done without travelers from risk areas bringing the virus back with them. (18-11-2020)


R-value

The reproduction number (the R value) is still reliable, according to a spokesperson for the RIVM. The R-value is important to determine whether the corona virus is on the rise or not. If the R value is 1, then each person with a coronavirus infection will infect one other person. If the R value is lower than 1, the number of infections decreases. (18-11-2020)


Stock markets

European stock markets skyrocketed Monday afternoon 9-11-2020 after positive news about Pfizer's corona vaccine. The American stock exchange also opened much higher. According to the initial research results, that vaccine is 90 percent effective and that result is better than experts expected. The Guardian writes that the first people may receive the vaccine by the end of this year. The first doses are then intended for, for example, people in healthcare. (9-11-2020)

 

Public areas must close for two weeks, new measures as of November 3

This applies to both indoor and outdoor spaces. Think of theaters, museums, casinos, cinemas, zoos, amusement parks, sex clubs and swimming pools. Shops may remain open and contact professions can also be carried out. Gyms also remain open, but individual group lessons are not allowed. The cabinet urges not to travel abroad until mid-January, unless it is really necessary.  For certain regions where the number of infections is highest, the cabinet is considering even stricter measures. This could include a curfew, further closure of the retail trade and the closure of schools. This regions are: Rotterdam Rijnmond, South-Holland and Twente. You can go outside, maximum two people. Press conference of Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Minister Hugo de Jonge (Public Health) (2-11-2020)

- In total, more than two thousand people infected with the corona virus are in hospital on Thursday 22-10-2020. There are 1,540 on the nursing wards and 463 on the ICs. Dutch hospitals have a total of 11,000 care beds and 1,150 IC beds. (22-10-2020)

 

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Office occupancy rates

Due to Corona virus, over the past nine months, office occupancy rates in the five major cities have fallen by 39 percent. This is reported by consulting firm Cushman & Wakefield on Thursday.  Especially in Eindhoven and The Hague, office space changed users less often.  The national decline is 22 percent. (3-10-2020)

 

The second corona wave

Was probably mainly caused by young people who brought the virus with them to the Netherlands after their holiday in the South of France or Spain.  This is the conclusion of the RIVM from research, the NOS writes.  The young people would have spread the virus further through parties and student houses.  This also infected older people, who spread the virus further through their work and family.  This is how the virus eventually ended up in nursing homes again, according to the RIVM. (3-10-2020)

 

Empty hotels

Horeca Netherlands expects major redundancies. The normally busy rooms, halls and corridors in transit the Mercure Amsterdam City Hotel are virtually empty.  It hurts manager Francis Windt.  "We don't have that many guests in the house at the moment. Before the crisis it went very well, but now it's dramatic. And that is emotionally quite heavy."  This Amsterdam hotel is certainly not the only one. Corona crisis is hitting the sector hard.


Business traveler

Bussines traveler traffic has almost come to a standstill, trade fairs and conferences have been canceled and tourists are still arriving only marginally. As a result, the sector is in the red. Thousands of layoffs many hotels are currently making a loss, says Koninklijke Horeca Nederland (KHN), who conducted research since June. (08-09-2020)


Public transport 

The number of travelers who checked in for public transport in the last week of August was still 32 percent lower than on a comparable day a year earlier. At the height of the corona crisis, this was even 90 percent lower. Although the number of check-in transactions is slowly increasing again, there is still a barrier for many people. (08-09-2020)

 

Travel news

World: Find places in the world to go with the live global map. Want to know when you can visit your preferred destination? Sign up to get email updates when restrictions lift. Link: Skyscanner


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