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Today in Austria: A roundup of the latest news on Friday

A demonstrator holds up a placard during a protest against Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz in front of the headquarters of the Austrian People's Party ÖVP in Vienna on October 7, 2021, a day after Kurz was implicated in a media corruption scandal.(Photo by ALEX HALADA / AFP)
A demonstrator holds up a placard during a protest against Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz in front of the headquarters of the Austrian People's Party ÖVP in Vienna on October 7, 2021, a day after Kurz was implicated in a media corruption scandal.(Photo by ALEX HALADA / AFP)
Find out what's going on in Austria on Friday, with The Local's short roundup of today's news.

Austria’s government is now in a “stalemate”

Austria has been experiencing a “political stalemate” since Thursday, the day after offices were raided in an investigation against Chancellor Sebastian Kurz’s (ÖVP) close circle, broadcaster ORF reports. Kurz’s ÖVP party insists on the presumption of innocence and says it will continue to rule with Kurz as Chancellor. Sebastian Kurz has also said he will not resign. However, ORF reports the Greens, who govern Austria in coalition with the ÖVP, are unhappy about the latest developments, and says some Green politicians at a federal level are calling for Kurz to resign.

There is expected to be a motion of censure against Kurz on Tuesday, when the Greens must decide how to proceed. The ÖVP says if the Greens decide to break up the coalition government, it will open the door for Austria’s far right parties, such as the FPÖ, who have a vaccine sceptical platform.

Around 1,000 people gathered outside the front of the ÖVP headquarters on Thursday evening to demand Kurz’s resignation, the Kurier newspaper reports. 

READ MORE: Offices of Austrian Chancellor Kurz’s party raided in Vienna

Austrians are not paying with cash so much

 Are Austrians finally falling out of love with cash? The volume of cashless payments grew by 5.9 percent in Austria from 2019 to 2020, according to broadcaster ORF. In addition, 82 percent of cashless transactions were made with contactless in the same period, a trend reversal compared to pre-pandemic figures with only 40% of cashless payments being made via contactless.

READ MORE: Why is cash so important to Austrians?

New skiing season starts in the Kitzsteinhorn

The recent snow means that the ski lifts up to the glacier on the Kitzsteinhorn will start running on Saturday as the ski season kicks off. However, no specific pandemic rules have been unveiled about how the skiing season will work, broadcaster ORF reports. Gletscherbahnen CEO Norbert Karlsböck told the broadcaster he is hoping for 2,000 visitors on the first day of skiing on Saturday.

Exhibition of the armed forces will take place in private this year

The usual exhibition of the armed forces will not take place in Vienna this year due to the pandemic, broadcaster ORF reports. The wreath-laying ceremony and the swearing-in of the recruits will take place as usual, but without an audience, and Heldenplatz will be cordoned off. It is not yet clear whether, as in the previous year, military jets will fly over Heldenplatz on October 26th.

Austrians ‘richer’ now than at the start of the pandemic

Austrians are richer in financial terms than at the start of the pandemic, according to  the Allianz Global Wealth report, according to articles in the Wiener Zeitung newspaper and Der Standard newspaper. The report shows that in Austria financial assets increased by five percent in 2020. The country has an average private net financial wealth €63,590 which puts it in 16th place in an international comparison.


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