Today in Austria: A round-up of the latest news on Wednesday

Today in Austria: A round-up of the latest news on Wednesday
(Photo by Tiziana FABI / AFP)
Find out what's going on today in Austria with The Local's short roundup of the news.

Russian Sputnik vaccine for Austria?

As The Local reported on Tuesday, Austria is currently negotiating with Russia about the delivery of one million doses of Sputnik V.

The Federal Chancellery in Vienna said on Tuesday a confidentiality agreement with Russia on the exchange of documents had been signed,  Wiener Zeitung reports, then added a purchase decision has not yet been made.

Der Standard said an EU Commission spokeswoman said consequences would have to be borne in the event of an emergency approval.

Liability would no longer lie with the manufacturers, but with member states.

Did Austrian Chancellor Kurz anger Brussels by threatening to veto vaccine purchase?

A report on the Politico website claims Austrian Chancellor Kurz threatened to veto the purchase of another 100 million doses of the BioNTechPfizer unless Austria received more of the 10 million advance doses available by June 30.

The Federal Chancellery has denied the story and told Der Standard  the report was based on incorrect information. 

No extra vaccine doses for Austria

The EU Presidency wants to use 3 million of 10 million BioNTechPfizer doses for EU states that have fallen behind in vaccine distribution, but Austria would not get any extra vaccines.

According to the proposal, Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Latvia and Slovakia as well as the Czech Republic would benefit from the solidarity quota. Austria would be allocated a total of 139,170 vaccination doses, Die Presse reports.

‘Easter rest’ will hit retailers

The “Easter rest” to contain the Corona crisis will be extended in Vienna until April 10th will mean retailers miss out on millions in sales Der Standard reports.

Eastern Austrian retailers would miss at least four important shopping days and a turnover of around €500 million, the outlet reports.

Vaccination and testing to continue over Easter weekend

The entire population of Burgenland is to be tested over Easter weekend according to Austrian broadcaster ORF.

By contrast, Vienna will close all its vaccination centres except for the Austria Centre because of a lack of vaccines, it is said.

Germany relaxes border controls with Tyrol – but quarantine and testing requirements remain

Germany has stopped checks along the border with the Austrian state of Tyrol – however testing and quarantine requirements remain. 

Under Germany’s entry rules, Tyrol had been categorised as higher risk due to the prevalence of mutations – but was downgraded to ‘risk area’ on Sunday. 

Arrivals from Tyrol will have to quarantine for 14 days and to show a negative test on entry. 


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