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

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Today in Austria: A round-up of the latest news on Friday
A man stands in front of the Hofburg palace at the deserted Helden Platz in Vienna, Austria on April 8, 2021 as Austria continues with Covid-19 restrictions. (Photo by JOE KLAMAR / AFP)

Find out what's going on today in Austria with The Local's short roundup of the news.


‘No relief’ for intensive care units 

Austria’s traffic light commission has made a risk assessment showing there will be no relief for the intensive care units for the next two weeks.

For this reason, all federal states and in particular Vienna, Burgenland, Lower and Upper Austria, are advised to continue to take measures in hospitals to cope with the system critical situation.

However, coronavirus cases are falling in Burgenland, Styria and Salzburg the Wiener Zeitung newspaper reports. Vorarlberg, the only Austrian state to open up its restaurants and events, is seeing a rise in infections. 


Seven day incidence is 227

The seven day incidence or number of new infections with the coronavirus in the past seven days per 100,000 inhabitants, is 227.3 according to the AGES database.

The number is still highest in Vienna (321.1), followed by Lower Austria (232.3) and Salzburg (223.3). The value is lowest in Vorarlberg (137) and Styria (175.5).

Delays to AstraZeneca deliveries

The Austrian Ministry of Health says this week’s delivery to Austria of 50,932 AstraZeneca vaccination dose will arrive late on Monday April 12 and will contain only 26,400 doses, Der Standard newspaper reports. Biontech and Moderna deliveries will continue as planned.


New coronavirus appointments to become available 

As The Local reported yesterday, Vienna is making more than 100,000 new coronavirus vaccination appointments available today (Friday).

Those who have registered will be contacted regarding the appointments via email or SMS. Appointments will be available for people over 65 years of age, high-risk patients aged 18 and over, people with disabilities and contact persons of pregnant women.

READ MORE: Vienna to make more than 100,000 new vaccination appointments free from Friday

Concerns Austria will miss deadline for billions of EU funding

Austria could receive €3.5 billion of funding from the EU development fund the Wiener Zeitung newspaper reports. The deadline for submitting reform and resilience plans is 30 April.

The paper says in Austria there is “widespread concern” this date could be missed, as little is known about the submissions.

The EU Commission says talks are ongoing with Austria on a technical level, but Austria is one of the few EU countries that has not yet submitted anything in writing. 

Micro businesses lose billions in sales 

Around 250,000 domestic businesses in Austria experienced a decline in sales of €7.7 billion last year Der Standard newspaper reports.

The decline in sales in 2020 was 7.3 percent in nominal terms and nine percent in real terms, it reports.

Hardest hit were photographers, fashion and clothing technology, arts and crafts and hairdressers, podiatrists, beauticians and masseurs.

Christina Enichlmair from SME Research Austria says it is the worst sales development since the beginning of the economic survey in 1981.

Labour minister says pandemic has ‘accelerated change”

The Wiener Zeitung newspaper features an interview with Austrian Labour minister Kocher in which he says the pandemic has accelerated change, creating new jobs in digitisation and STEM.

He says 44 percent of jobseekers have only completed compulsory schooling and more training is needed. He hopes by summer Austria can reach an unemployment level of 330,000 to 350,000 people



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